We present, for the first time, high-spatial-resolution observations combining high-order adaptive optics (AO), frame selection, and post-facto image correction via speckle masking. The data analysis is based on observations of solar active region NOAA 10486 taken with the Dunn Solar Telescope (DST) at the Sacramento Peak Observatory (SPO) of the National Solar Observatory (NSO) on 29 October 2003. The high Strehl ratio encountered in AO corrected short-exposure images provides highly improved signal-to-noise ratios leading to a superior recovery of the object's Fourier phases. This allows reliable detection of small-scale solar features near the diffraction limit of the telescope. Speckle masking imaging provides access to high-order wavefront aberrations, which predominantly originate at high atmospheric layers and are only partially corrected by the AO system. In addition, the observations provided qualitative measures of the image correction away from the lock point of the AO system. We further present a brief inspection of the underlying imaging theory discussing the limitations and prospects of this multi-faceted image reconstruction approach in terms of the recovery of spatial information, photometric accuracy, and spectroscopic applications.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Astronomy and Astrophysics
- Space and Planetary Science