Observing at LBT: The Power of Adaptive Optics

Friday, 30 November 2012 9 a.m. — 10 a.m. MST

AURA Lecture Hall

NOIRLab South Colloquia
SIMONE ESPOSITO (Arcetri Observatory, Italy and Gemini South Visiting Astronomer)

The LBT is a unique telescope featuring two co-mounted optical trains with 8.4m primary mirrors. The telescope Adaptive Optics (AO) system uses two innovative key-components namely an adaptive secondary mirror with 672 actuators and a high order pyramid wavefront sensor. On sky commissioning demonstrated that such a system reached performance never achieved before on a ground based large optical telescope. Images with 40mas resolution and Strehl-Ratio (SR)>90% has been acquired in H band (1.6 um). Such images showed a contrast as high as 10-4. In the seminar after describing shortly the commissioning of the LBT AO systems I will present some scientific results achieved in SDT AO mode in the fields of exoplanet imaging (HR8799), CMD of crowded globular clusters regions (M92, M15), high resolution astrometry of theta 1 ori cluster in Trapezium and high resolution images of jets. Finally I will briefly describe future developments of LBT AO systems.