Real-time control developments for the CANARY MOAO instrument at Durham


Alastair Basden, Richard Myers, Nigel Dipper, Eddy Younger, Tim Morris, Deli Geng, Sofia Dimoudi


Durham University


The CANARY instrument is an MOAO demonstrator instrument for the E-ELT EAGLE instrument, fielded on the William Herschel Telescope. We present the CANARY real-time control system, both as used on-sky for the NGS only phase in 2010, and also as will be used on-sky in November 2011 with tomographic LGS capability and four LGSs. This system is based on the Durham AO Real-time Controller (DARC), for which we provide details of the main features. The challenges that we encountered will be presented as a learning experience, including camera synchronisation issues, and problems with a reliable telemetry on a loaded network. We will also present recent progress made in implementing a real-time control system for EAGLE in the laboratory in Durham, and the implications that this design has. By using a system comprised of a small number of high end GPU accelerators, theoretical performance is enough to perform matrix-vector based wavefront reconstruction for EAGLE, and we investigate whether this is a practical solution.

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