Interferometric array design: Optimizing the locations of the antenna pads
DEMIRM, Observatoire de Paris, 61 Av. de l'Observatoire, 75014 Paris, France
Accepted: 31 July 2001
The design of an interferometric array should allow optimal instrumental response regarding all possible source positions, times of integration and scientific goals. It should also take into account constraints such as forbidden regions on the ground due to impracticable topography. The complexity of the problem requires one to proceed by steps. A possible approach is to first consider a single observation and a single scientific purpose. A new algorithm is introduced to solve efficiently this particular problem called the configuration problem. It is based on the computation of pressure forces related to the discrepancies between the model (as determined by the scientific purpose) and the actual distribution of Fourier samples. The flexibility and rapidity of the method are well adapted to the full array design. A software named APO that can be used for the design of new generation interferometers such as ALMA and ATA has been developed.
Key words: instrumentation: interferometers / methods: numerical
© ESO, 2001