Colloquium: Serban Leveratto (Space Flight)

17 december 2018 10:30 - Locatie: B2.100, Faculty of Aerospace Engineering, Kluyverweg 1, 2629 HS, Delft

Characterisation of the Dicke-Switch Chopper System and AGPM Coronagraph for the NEAR Experiment at the ESO-VLT

As part of the New Earths in the Alpha Cen Region experiment, VISIR, an imager and spectrometer for the mid-infrared at the Very Large Telescope of the European Southern Observatory, will be soon upgraded to improve its performance in terms of high contrast and sensitivity for the detection of Earth-like planets in the Alpha Centauri star system, the closest to the Sun.  Part of the VISIR upgrade consists in a novel chopper system based on the Dicke-switch concept for noise calibration of the detector array. In addition, an annular groove phase mask coronagraph will be implemented to provide high contrast imaging capabilities for observations of the circumstellar environment. The thesis project was focused on the laboratory tests required in order to validate the ability of the Dicke-switch concept to calibrate the detector array of VISIR and characterise the measure coronagraphic performance of the new phase mask.