We have previously shown that adaptive optics (AO) point spread functions (PSFs) can be modeled by using a PSF comprised of a Lorentzian profile and an Airy pattern (Drummond, 1998, Drummond et al. 1998). During a recent observing run to study the size and shape of main belt asteroids at the Gemini North telescope using the Altair AO NGS system, we obtained on the order of 300 images of point sources as PSF calibrations. With this large number of PSFs we are able to statistically compare this analytic modelling approach to actual measurements of the Strehl ratios and the azimuthally-averaged full width at half maximum (FWHM) which are typically used to characterize the focal plane performance of an AO system.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

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