Performance Improvement of Near Earth Space Survey (NESS) Wide-Field Telescope (NESS-2) Optics
Journal of Astronomy and Space Sciences
We modified the optical system of 500 mm wide-field telescope of which point spread function showed an irregularity. The telescope has been operated for Near Earth Space Survey (NESS) located at Siding Spring Observatory (SSO) in Australia, and the optical system was brought back to Korea in January 2008. After performing a numerical simulation with the tested value of surface figure error of the primary mirror using optical design program, we found that the surface figure error of the mirror
... ror of the mirror should be fabricated less than root mean square (RMS) λ/10 in order to obtain a stellar full width at half maximum (FWHM) below 28 μm. However, we started to figure the mirror for the target value of RMS λ/20, because system surface figure error would be increased by the error induced by the optical axis adjustment, mirror cell installation, and others. The radius of curvature of the primary mirror was 1,946 mm after the correction. Its measured surface figure error was less than RMS λ/20 on the table of polishing machine, and RMS λ/15 after installation in the primary mirror cell. A test observation performed at Daeduk Observatory at Korea Astronomy and Space Science Institute by utilizing the exiting mount, and resulted in 39.8 μm of stellar FWHM. It was larger than the value from numerical simulation, and showed wing-shaped stellar image. It turned out that the measured-curvature of the secondary mirror, 1,820 mm, was not the same as the designed one, 1,795.977 mm. We fabricated the secondary mirror to the designed value, and finally obtained a stellar FWHM of 27 μm after re-installation of the optical system into SSO NESS Observatory in Australia.