We show star images obtained with a miniature ``densified pupil imaging interferometer'' also called a hyper-telescope. The formation of such images violates a ``golden rule of imaging interferometers'' which appeared to forbid the use of interferometric arrangements differing from a Fizeau interferometer. These produce useless images when the sub-apertures spacing is much wider than their size, owing to diffraction through the sub-apertures. The hyper-telescope arrangement solves these problems opening the way towards multi-kilometer imaging arrays in space. We experimentally obtain an intensity gain of ( 24± 3 times ) when a densified-pupil interferometer is compared to an equivalent Fizeau-type interferometer and show images of the double star ¿ Gem. The initial results presented confirm the possibility of directly obtaining high resolution and high dynamic range images in the recombined focal plane of a large interferometer if enough elements are used. Based on observations performed at the Observatoire de Haute Provence.
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Astronomy & Astrophysics Supplement|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Dec 2000|