Design of the Ground Layer Adaptive Optics system for the 8-metre Subaru Telescope in Hawaii

The ANU Research School of Astronomy and Astrophysics (RSAA) is collaborating with the National Astronomical Observatory Japan to develop a next-generation Ground Layer Adaptive Optics (GLAO) system for installation on the 8-meter optical-infrared Subaru telescope at the summit of Maunakea, Hawaii.

GLAO is a major instrumentation project, led by the Subaru Telescope in collaboration with world-leading astronomers, adaptive optics and laser scientists and engineers from institutions in Australia (ANU), Japan (Tohoku University) and Taiwan (Academia Sinica Institute of Astronomy and Astrophysics, ASIAA). The RSAA participation in GLAO includes the Laser Guide Star Facility and the Wavefront Adapter Flange, two key elements for the success of GLAO.

The Laser Guide Star Facility (LGSF) comprises the Laser Projection System with two high power lasers to be split in two for the generation of four laser guide stars on the sky; and the Laser Acquisition System running the LGSF diagnostics. Short- and long-term projects are offered for the students to develop their research and technical skills, as well as gaining work experience in a multi-disciplinary research environment.

Students in this project will have the opportunity to work hands-on with the experts investigating the optimum mechanism to split the guidestar laser without losing beam quality or system performance. They will also be involved in the design and implementation of the Laser Acquisition system, an independent subsystem encompassing an auxiliary telescope, a camera, and the control system to image the asterism of laser guide stars on the sky and derive important information to the GLAO instrument.  


Undergraduate and postgraduate students are encouraged to contact the project team and inquire about current and potential research projects. Prior experience in at least two of the following disciplines is required: physics, optics/optical engineering, system engineering, space engineering, instrumentation, laser systems, control systems, computer science.

Primary Supervisor: Prof. Celine d'Orgeville


This project is undertaken in collaboration with the Subaru Telescope in Hawaii, USA, Tohoku University (Japan), and the Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Academia Sinica (Taiwan).