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Next-generation telescopes with curved focal surface for ultra-low surface brightness surveys

Abstract : In spite of major advances in both ground-and space-based instrumentation, the ultra-low-surface brightness universe (ULSB) still remains a largely unexplored volume in observational parameter space. ULSB observations provide unique constraints on a wide variety of objects, from the Zodiacal light all the way to the optical cosmological background radiation, through dust cirri, mass loss shells in giant stars, LSB galaxies and the intracluster light. These surface brightness levels (>28-29 mag arcsec −2) are observed by maximising the efficiency of the surveys and minimising or removing the systematics arising in the measurement of surface brightness. Based on full-system photon Monte Carlo simulations, we present here the performance of a ground-based telescope aimed at carrying out ULSB observations, with a curved focal surface design. Its off-axis optical design maximises the field of view while minimising the focal ratio. No lenses are used, as their multiple internal scatterings increase the wings of the point spread function (PSF), and the usual requirement of a flat focal plane is relaxed through the use of curved CCD detectors. The telescope has only one unavoidable single refractive surface, the cryostat window, and yet it delivers a PSF with ultra-compact wings, which allows the detection, for a given exposure time, of surface brightness levels nearly three orders of magnitude fainter than any other current telescope.
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Contributor : Emmanuel Hugot <>
Submitted on : Sunday, August 4, 2019 - 10:01:54 AM
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Simona Lombardo, Eduard Muslimov, Gérard Lemaitre, Emmanuel Hugot. Next-generation telescopes with curved focal surface for ultra-low surface brightness surveys. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society, Oxford University Press (OUP): Policy P - Oxford Open Option A, 2019, ⟨10.1093/mnras/stz2068⟩. ⟨hal-02263343⟩



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