Summary: The unique Antarctic atmosphere: implications
for adaptive optics
Jon S. Lawrence1
, Michael C.B. Ashley1
, Michael G. Burton1
, James P.
, and John W.V. Storey1
School of Physics, University of New South Wales, Sydney NSW 2052, Australia
California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA 91125, USA
Abstract. The turbulence structure of the atmosphere is the primary limitation to
adaptive optics system performance on extremely large telescopes -- driving current
world-wide site testing campaigns. The potential for adaptive optics correction on
extremely large telescopes located at Dome C station on the Antarctic plateau is in-
vestigated here. Due to the unique atmospheric characteristics of this site it is found
that a natural guide star adaptive optics system with a single deformable mirror should
outperform a multi-conjugate multi-laser guide star system at a mid-latitude site.