Wavefront metrology for space optics

Alignment of optical systems for satellites

Satellites use a wide variety of optical instruments, e.g. for measuring gas concentrations in the earth’s atmosphere or for improving weather models. These devices are adjusted and tested in the laboratory under clean-room conditions, since readjusting in orbit is out of the question.

Shack-Hartmann wavefront sensors are used to adjust such systems, as they measure the wavefront precisely, quickly and with excellent basic accuracy. Even strongly aberrated wavefronts, as in a misaligned system, can be reliably measured and adjusted with wavefront sensor modules in a double pass. Under low-light conditions, the measuring modules stand out with dedicated optics and the high sensitivity of the wavefront sensors.

Free-space optics (FSO) communication

Communication between the ground station and satellites by means of light allows very high transmission rates. This requires powerful optical emitters and receivers with special optics, as the signal is subject to interference from turbulence in the atmosphere and scattering. Shack-Hartmann sensors are used to design, adjust and test these transmission optics, e.g. for wavelengths in the SWIR range between 900nm and 1700nm. The high evaluation rates of wavefront sensors, in conjunction with adaptive optics, also enable the correction of wavefront distortions that the laser beam has to sustain on its way through the atmosphere.

Our solution for space optics

SHSLab wavefront sensors and the modules of the SHSInspect family measure the transmitted wavefront at wavelengths from 193nm to 1700nm and provide a Zernike analysis and the respective PSF/MTF.
The Shack-Hartmann software SHSWorks offers both a flexible user interface/GUI and an SDK for integration in customer applications.
Many years of experience in the implementation of customer-specific systems make Optocraft the go-to partner – also for your field!
Optocraft develops metrology solutions for even for the most demanding measurement tasks – in close cooperation with customers. In addition, the company offers extensive support from A to Z – with simulation, design, installation and configuration of the wavefront measurement systems

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