EDP Sciences
Free access
Volume 492, Number 1, December II 2008
Page(s) 289 - 300
Section Astronomical instrumentation
DOI http://dx.doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361:200810650
Published online 27 October 2008

A&A 492, 289-300 (2008)
DOI: 10.1051/0004-6361:200810650

Comparison of coronagraphs for high-contrast imaging in the context of extremely large telescopes

P. Martinez1, 2, 3, A. Boccaletti2, 3, M. Kasper1, C. Cavarroc4, N. Yaitskova1, T. Fusco5, 3, and C. Vérinaud6

1  European Southern Observatory, Karl-Schwarzschild-Strasse 2, 85748 Garching, Germany
    e-mail: martinez@eso.org
2  LESIA, Observatoire de Paris Meudon, 5 pl. Janssen, 92195 Meudon, France
3  Groupement d'intérêt scientifique PHASE (Partenariat Haute résolution Angulaire Sol Espace)
4  CEA, Saclay, 91191 Gif-sur-Yvette Cedex, France
5  ONERA, 29 avenue de la division Leclerc, BP 52, 92320 Chatillon Cedex, France
6  LAOG, Observatoire de Grenoble, 38041 Grenoble, France

Received 22 July 2008 / Accepted 12 September 2008

Aims. We compare coronagraph concepts and investigate their behavior and suitability for planet-finder projects with Extremely Large Telescopes (ELTs, 30-42 meter class telescopes).
Methods. For this task, we analyzed the impact of major error sources that occur in a coronagraphic telescope (central obscuration, secondary support, low-order segment aberrations, segment reflectivity variations, pointing errors) for phase, amplitude, and interferometric type coronagraphs. This analysis was performed at two different levels of the detection process: under residual phase left uncorrected by an eXtreme Adaptive Optics system (XAO) for a wide range of Strehl ratios and after a general and simple model of speckle calibration, assuming common phase aberrations between the XAO and the coronagraph (static phase aberrations of the instrument) and non-common phase aberrations downstream of the coronagraph (differential aberrations provided by the calibration unit).
Results. We derive critical parameters cope by each concept in order of importance. We show three coronagraph categories as function of the accessible angular separation and proposed optimal one in each case. Most of the time amplitude concepts appear more favorable, and the Apodized Pupil Lyot Coronagraph specifically gathers the adequate characteristics to be a baseline design for ELTs.

Key words: instrumentation: high angular resolution -- instrumentation: adaptive optics -- telescopes -- techniques: high angular resolution

© ESO 2008