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Optical Design of a Miniaturised Solar Magnetograph for Space Applications

Calcines Rosario, Ariadna; Green, Lucie M.; Smith, Alan; Long, David M.

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Lucie M. Green

Alan Smith

David M. Long


Stanislav Gordeyev


Measuring the Sun’s magnetic field is a key component of monitoring solar activity and forecasting space weather. The main goal of the research presented in this paper is to investigate the possibility of reducing the dimensions and weight of a solar magnetograph while preserving its optical quality. This article presents a range of different designs, along with their advantages and disadvantages, and an analysis of the optical performance of each. All proposed designs are based on the magneto-optical filter (MOF) technique. As a result of the design study, a miniaturised solar magnetograph is proposed with an ultra-compact layout. The dimensions are 345 mm × 54 mm × 54 mm, and the optical quality is almost at the diffraction limit. The design has an entrance focal ratio of F/17.65, with a plate scale of 83.58 arcsec/mm at the telescope image focal plane, and produces a magnification of 0.79. The field of view is 1920 arcsec in diameter, equivalent to ±0.27 degrees, sufficient to cover the entire solar disk.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Dec 2, 2023
Online Publication Date Dec 13, 2023
Publication Date 2023-12
Deposit Date Feb 21, 2024
Publicly Available Date Feb 21, 2024
Journal Aerospace
Publisher MDPI
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 10
Issue 12
Article Number 1028
Keywords solar magnetograph, solar instrumentation, space sciences, miniaturised optics, space weather
Public URL


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