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28 June 2006 GLAS: engineering a common-user Rayleigh laser guide star for adaptive optics on the William Herschel Telescope
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Abstract
The GLAS (Ground-layer Laser Adaptive-optics System) project is to construct a common-user Rayleigh laser beacon that will work in conjunction with the existing NAOMI adaptive optics system, instruments (near IR imager INGRID, optical integral field spectrograph OASIS, coronagraph OSCA) and infrastructure at the 4.2-m William Herschel Telescope (WHT) on La Palma. The laser guide star system will increase sky coverage available to high-order adaptive optics from ~1% to approaching 100% and will be optimized for scientific exploitation of the OASIS integral-field spectrograph at optical wavelengths. Additionally GLAS will be used in on-sky experiments for the application of laser beacons to ELTs. This paper describes the full range of engineering of the project ranging through the laser launch system, wavefront sensors, computer control, mechanisms, diagnostics, CCD detectors and the safety system. GLAS is a fully funded project, with final design completed and all equipment ordered, including the laser. Integration has started on the WHT and first light is expected summer 2006.
© (2006) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
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