Experiments with a novel CCD stellar polarimeter
University Observatory, Acre Road, Glasgow, G20 0TL Scotland, UK
2 Dept. of Physics and Astronomy, University of Heidelberg, Germany e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
Corresponding author: D. Clarke, email@example.com
Accepted: 30 November 2001
Experiments and observations have been undertaken with “bread-board” equipment to explore the potential of a “ring” stellar polarimeter with a CCD camera, rather than photographic plates used in Treanor's ([CITE]) original instrument. By spreading the polarimetric signal over a large number of pixels on the detector, design prediction suggests that the polarimetric accuracy could be or per frame or even better. Although the photon accumulations suggest that this was achieved, instabilities in the employed crude modulator system provided frame to frame measurements with a greater than expected scatter. Software was developed to reduce the data in a simple way. With a design using more professional components and perhaps with more sophisticated reduction procedures, the full potential of the method should be achievable with the prospect of high precision polarimetry of the brighter stars. As an experimental bonus, the employed CCD chip was found to be free from any measurable polarizational sensitivity.
Key words: instrumentation / polarimeters: techniques / polarimetric
© ESO, 2002