A computer program has been written as a unique implementation of an image-based wavefront-sensing algorithm reported in “Iterative-Transform Phase Retrieval Using Adaptive Diversity” (GSC-14879-1), NASA Tech Briefs, Vol. 31, No. 4 (April 2007), page 32. This software was originally intended for application to the James Webb Space Telescope, but is also applicable to other segmented-mirror telescopes.

The software is capable of determining optical-wavefront information using, as input, a variable number of irradiance measurements collected in defocus planes about the best focal position. The software also uses input of the geometrical definition of the telescope exit pupil (otherwise denoted the pupil mask) to identify the locations of the segments of the primary telescope mirror. From the irradiance data and mask information, the software calculates an estimate of the optical wavefront (a measure of performance) of the telescope generally and across each primary mirror segment specifically. The software is capable of generating irradiance data, wavefront estimates, and basis functions for the full telescope and for each primary-mirror segment. Optionally, each of these pieces of information can be measured or computed outside of the software and incorporated during execution of the software.

This program was written by Jeffrey S. Smith, Bruce Dean, and David Aronstein of Goddard Space Flight Center. GSC-15399-1


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This article first appeared in the September, 2013 issue of Software Tech Briefs Magazine.

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