UBC Faculty Research and Publications

Large-Aperture Mirror Array (LAMA): conceptual design for a distributed-aperture 42-meter telescope. Hickson, Paul

Abstract

We propose a high-density coherent array of eighteen 10-meter liquid-mirror telescopes. Each telescope is equipped with a reflective corrector system that enables it to point and track within an eight-degree diameter accessible field of view centered on the zenith. Equipped with adaptive optics, each telescope would deliver a diffraction-limited beam to a common focal plane. There, a dichroic optical-infrared camera will provide simultaneous imaging in six wavelength bands from 0.6 to 2.2 um. Operating coherently as a Fizeau imaging interferometer, the array would be capable of achieving 4 mas resolution at 1 um and a point source sensitivity of 40 pJy (IAB = 34.9) in a single 30 min exposure. With incoherent beam recombination it would be capable of 25 mas resolution and a point-source detection limit of 250 pJy (IAB = 32.9) in a single 30 min exposure. The telescope uses proven technologies and could be built in a comparatively-short time. Copyright 2003 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers. One print or electronic copy may be made for personal use only. Systematic reproduction and distribution, duplication of any material in this paper for a fee or for commercial purposes, or modification of the content of the paper are prohibited.

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