Adaptive Optics in Astronomy

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Adaptive optics is a powerful new technique used to sharpen telescope images blurred by the Earth's atmosphere. This authoritative book is the first dedicated to the use of adaptive optics in astronomy. Mainly developed for defence applications, the technique of adaptive optics has only recently been introduced in astronomy. Already it has allowed ground-based telescopes to produce images with sharpness rivalling those from the Hubble Space Telescope. The technique is expected to revolutionise the future of ground-based optical astronomy. Written by an international team of experts who have pioneered the development of the field, this timely volume provides both a rigorous introduction to the technique and a comprehensive review of current and future systems. It is set to become the standard reference for graduate students, researchers and optical engineers in astronomy and other areas of science where adaptive optics is finding exciting new applications.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Highly recommended for astronomical libraries and for anyone serious about using AO systems in future.' Paul O'Brien, The Observatory

'This new and expanded edition of what has become an established classic in the range of books on optics is most welcome … provides a much needed reference work … treatment of the subject is thorough and the reader is provided with an excellent review of a topic that has great relevance for the future of astronomy … thoroughly recommended to all who have an interest in the design of optical systems for remote viewing.' Grant H. Thomson, The Imaging Science Journal

Astronomers from the US and France who have helped pioneer it explain a new technique used to sharpen telescope images blurred by the Earth atmosphere. Since it was released by the military for civilian use, it has allowed ground-based telescopes to produce images with sharpness rivalling those from the Hubble Space Telescope. They provide a rigorous introduction and review the current and projected systems in a quality volume that should last the many years they expect it to be a standard reference for graduate students, researchers, and optical engineers both in astronomy and in other areas of science where sharper images would not be amiss. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521612142
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2004
  • Pages: 411
  • Product dimensions: 6.85 (w) x 9.72 (h) x 0.87 (d)

Table of Contents

Part I. Introductory Background: 1. Historical context F. Roddier; 2. Imaging through the atmosphere F. Roddier; Part II. The Design of an Adaptive Optics System: 3. Theoretical aspects F. Roddier; 4. Wave-front compensation devices M. Séchaud; 5. Wave-front sensors G. Rousset; 6. Control techniques P.-Y. Madec; 7. Performance estimation and system modeling M. Northcott; Part III. Adaptive Optics with Natural Guide Stars: 8. The COME-ON/ADONIS systems G. Rousset and J.-L. Beuzit; 9. The UH-CFHT systems F. Roddier and F. Rigaut; 10. Adaptive optics in solar astronomy J. Beckers; Part IV. Adaptive Optics with Laser Beacons: 11. Overview of adaptive optics with laser beacons D. Sandler; 12. The design of laser beacon AO systems D. Sandler; 13. Laser beacon adaptive optics systems D. Sandler; Part V. The Impact of Adaptive Optics in Astronomy: 14. Observing with adaptive optics P. Léna and O. Lai; 15. Astronomical results P. Léna and O. Lai; 16. Future expectations F. Roddier; Index.

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