Wavefront Sensing and Control for Aligning the JWST

Dr. James Fienup, Professor of Optics, Institute of Optics, University of Rochester

Monday, April 25, 2022
3:30 p.m.

Zoom only


The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), a $10B Christmas gift to the astronomical community, was launched on the morning of December 25, 2021. Since then, the 18 segments making up its 6.5-meter primary mirror were unfolded and aligned to form a coherently phased surface that is yielding diffraction-limited images. The final fine-phasing step was performed with phase retrieval algorithms that were developed over the decades and made more robust at the Institute of Optics. This talk, given by Professor James Fienup, will describe algorithms invented earlier for determining the aberrations of the Hubble Space Telescope, which were transitioned to the phasing of JWST, some of research performed here, and finally the multiple other steps in aligning the mirror segments.