The Wide-Area Linear Optical Polarimeter (WALOP)-South instrument will be mounted on the 1-m South African Astronomical Observatory telescope in South Africa as part of the Polar-Areas Stellar Imaging Polarization High Accuracy Experiment (PASIPHAE) program to carry out a linear imaging polarization survey of the Galactic polar regions in the optical band. Designed to achieve polarimetric sensitivity of 0.05% across a 35 × 35 arc min field of view (FOV), it will be capable of measuring the Stokes parameters I, q, and u in a single exposure in the R broadband and narrowband filters between 0.5 to 0.7 μm. For each measurement, four images of the full field corresponding to linear polarization angles of 0 deg, 45 deg, 90 deg, and 135 deg in the instrument coordinate system will be created on four detectors from which the Stokes parameters can be found using differential photometry. In designing the optical system, major challenges included correcting for the dispersion introduced by large split angle Wollaston prisms used as analysers and other aberrations from the entire field to obtain imaging quality point spread function (PSF) at the detector. We present the optical design of the WALOP-South instrument which overcomes these challenges and delivers near seeing limited PSFs for the entire FOV.
Journal of Astronomical Telescopes, Instruments, and Systems
- Pub Date:
- January 2021
- Astrophysics - Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics
- 31 pages, 18 Figures and 8 Tables. Accepted in the Journal of Astronomical Telescopes, Instruments, and Systems