Shaped pupil coronagraphs for planet finding: Optimization, manufacturing, and experimental results

N. Jeremy Kasdin, Ruslan Belikov, James Beall, Robert J. Vanderbei, Michael G. Littman, Michael Carr, Amir Give'on

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


Current plans call for the first Terrestrial Planet Finder mission, TPF-C, to be a monolithic space telescope with a coronagraph for achieving high contrast. Our group at Princeton pioneered the concept of shaped pupils for high contrast imaging and planet detection. In previous papers we introduced a number of families of optimal shaped pupils in square, circular, and elliptical apertures. Here, we show our most promising designs and present our laboratory results for the elliptical shaped pupil. We are currently achieving better than 10 -7 contrast at 10 λ/D and 10 -5 contrast at 4 λ/D, without wavefront control. We describe the deep ion etching manufacturing process to make free standing masks. We also discuss what is limiting contrast in the laboratory and our progress in wavefront correction.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number59050G
Pages (from-to)1-9
Number of pages9
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2005
EventTechniques and Instrumentation for Detection of Exoplanets II - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Aug 2 2005Aug 4 2005

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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