The Catania Astrophysical Observatory Spectropolarimeter (CAOS) is a white-pupil cross-dispersed échelle spectrograph with a spectral resolution of up to R = 55,000 in the 375–1100 nm range in a single exposure, with complete coverage up to 856 nm. CAOS is linked to the 36-inch telescope, at Mount Etna Observatory, with a couple of 100 μm optical fibers and it achieves a signal-to-noise ratio better than 60 for a V = 10 mag star in one hour. CAOS is thermally stabilized in temperature within a 0.01 K rms, so that radial velocities are measured with a precision better than 100 m s‑1 from a single spectral line. Linear and circular spectropolarimetric observations are possible by means of a Savart plate working in series with a half-wave and a quarter-wave retarder plate in the 376–850 nm range. As is usual for high-resolution spectropolarimeters, CAOS is suitable to measure all Stokes parameters across spectral lines and it cannot measure the absolute degree of polarization. Observations of unpolarized standard stars show that instrumental polarization is generally zero at 550 nm and can increase up to 3% at the other wavelengths. Since polarized and unpolarized standard stars are useless, we suggest a method to calibrate a high-resolution spectropolarimeter on the basis of the polarimetric properties of spectral lines formed in the presence of a magnetic field. As applied to CAOS, observations of magnetic chemically peculiar stars of the main sequence show that the cross-talk from linear to circular polarization is smaller than 0.4% and that conversion from circular to linear is less than 2.7%. Strength and wavelength dependences of cross-talk can be entirely ascribed, via numerical simulations, to the incorrect retardance of achromatic wave plates.

A Method to Calibrate the High-resolution Catania Astrophysical Observatory Spectropolarimeter

LEONE, Francesco;Giarrusso M.;
2016-01-01

Abstract

The Catania Astrophysical Observatory Spectropolarimeter (CAOS) is a white-pupil cross-dispersed échelle spectrograph with a spectral resolution of up to R = 55,000 in the 375–1100 nm range in a single exposure, with complete coverage up to 856 nm. CAOS is linked to the 36-inch telescope, at Mount Etna Observatory, with a couple of 100 μm optical fibers and it achieves a signal-to-noise ratio better than 60 for a V = 10 mag star in one hour. CAOS is thermally stabilized in temperature within a 0.01 K rms, so that radial velocities are measured with a precision better than 100 m s‑1 from a single spectral line. Linear and circular spectropolarimetric observations are possible by means of a Savart plate working in series with a half-wave and a quarter-wave retarder plate in the 376–850 nm range. As is usual for high-resolution spectropolarimeters, CAOS is suitable to measure all Stokes parameters across spectral lines and it cannot measure the absolute degree of polarization. Observations of unpolarized standard stars show that instrumental polarization is generally zero at 550 nm and can increase up to 3% at the other wavelengths. Since polarized and unpolarized standard stars are useless, we suggest a method to calibrate a high-resolution spectropolarimeter on the basis of the polarimetric properties of spectral lines formed in the presence of a magnetic field. As applied to CAOS, observations of magnetic chemically peculiar stars of the main sequence show that the cross-talk from linear to circular polarization is smaller than 0.4% and that conversion from circular to linear is less than 2.7%. Strength and wavelength dependences of cross-talk can be entirely ascribed, via numerical simulations, to the incorrect retardance of achromatic wave plates.
2016
instrumentation: polarimeters; instrumentation: spectrographs; methods: observational
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11769/44337
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