UC Santa Cruz

Dept of Astronomy and Astrophysics

Astronomy 289, Winter 2016

Adaptive Optics and its Applications




January 12th 2016 through March 10th, 2016

Tu Th 10:00 - 11:45 AM
Center for Adaptive Optics
Conference Room (top floor)

UC Santa Cruz

Neptune with and without AO



Office: ISB 379
Phone: (831) 459-2991
email: max at ucolick.org

Tu Th noon - 1:00 PM

Either in CfAO Conference Room or in my office, Interdisciplinary Science Bldg 379




Required Text:

Reader for this course is available at the Bay Tree Bookstore (Click on "Readers)

You can pick it up in person, or order it


Syllabus: click here

Links to other lectures/tutorials on Adaptive Optics

General Adaptive Optics links

Links to information about Concept Maps




Reading Assignments

from Course Reader, available from slugstore.ucsc.edu



Reading 1 Thursday January 14th Introduction to AO
Reading 2 Tuesday January 19

Geometrical Optics readings

zip file (PW protected)

Reading 3 Tuesday Jan 26 and Thurs Jan 28 Reading on Optical Propagation Through Turbulence
Reading 4 Thurs Feb 4 Reader: Section 5 Wavefront Sensing (2 articles)
Reading 5 Tues Feb 9

Reader: Section 6 Wavefront Correction AND Section 7: Signal to Noise Ratio and Detectors

Reading 6 Thurs Feb 11 Reader: Section 9 - Laser Guide Stars, Physics of the Sodium Atom
Reading 7 Tues Feb 16 Reader: Section 9 - Laser Guide Stars, Laser Systems
Reading 8   Thurs Feb 18 Reader: Section 8 - Control Systems  
Reading 9        
Reading 10        
Reading 11    






Homework Assignments

    Due date   PDF Files

WORD Files

Homework 1: Tell me a bit about yourself   January 14  



Word2   n/a  
Homework 2: Optics   January 28   PDF        
Homework 3:   February 9   PDF        
Homework 4:                
Project Homework:                
Project Homework:                
Homework 5:                




Note: you are welcome to use slides and figures from these lectures in your own presentations, under the condition that you include the words ''Credit: Claire E. Max, UCSC'' somewhere on your slide


        Lecturer       PDF Files

PPT Files

    Other Files and notes

January 12

Lecture 1: Introduction to adaptive optics; Overview of course


Lecture 1 PDF

Lecture 1 PPT    




January 14

Lecture 2: Atmospheric Turbulence: Sources, Kolmogorov turbulence







Lecture 2 PDF

Lecture 2 PPT


Movie 1

Movie 2

Movie 3


January 19

Lecture 3: Geometrical Optics


Lecture 3 PDF

Lecture 3 PPT    

Movie 1

Movie 2

January 21

Lecture 4: Optics, continued: Geometrical and Physical


Lecture 4 PDF

Lecture 4 PPT


January 26

Lecture 5: Physical Optics, continued. Then Optical Propagation through Atmospheric Turbulence


Lecture 5 PDF

Lecture 5 PPT


Movie 1

Movie 2

Movie 3

Movie 4


January 28

Lecture 6: Error Budget Concepts. Start of class projects.


Lecture 6 PDF

Class Projects

Lecture 6 PPT

Class Projects PPT



February 2nd

Lecture 7: Wavefront Sensing


Lecture 7 PDF

Lecture 7 PPT



February 4th

Lecture 8: Deformable Mirrors; Class Projects Starters


Lecture 8 PDF

Project Starter PDF

Lecture 8 PPT

Project Starter PPT




February 9th

Lecture 9: Image motion, detectors, signal to noise ratio; Class Projects





February 11th

Lecture 10: Laser Guide Stars





February 16th

Lecture 11: Laser Guide Stars part 2

Class projects: Performance requirements first draft due






February 18th

Lecture 12: AO Control Systems






February 23

Lab: AO Demonstrator


February 25

Lecture 14: Wavefront Reconstruction


March 1st

Class Projects: Focused Investigation

Extreme AO for detecting extra-solar planets


March 3rd

Lecture 15: LGS tomography, LTAO, MCAO, MOAO, GLAO






March 8th

Lecture 16: AO Optimization; How to be a savvy user and consumer of AO








March 10

Project Presentations - Mini conceptual design review and Project Synthesis.


March 14-17th

Exam period: there will be a take-home exam. Project reports will be due.





This material is based in part upon work supported by the National Science Foundation.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.