"JOURNAL OF RADIO ELECTRONICS" (Zhurnal Radioelektroniki ISSN 1684-1719, N 11, 2017

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Method of the radio holographic INSPECTION of the main mirror surface of RATAN-600 radiotelescope using the radial movement of the reference element


V. B. Khaikin 1,2, M. K. Lebedev 1,2, A. M. Ripak 1,2

1 Special astrophysical observatory of RAS, Saint Petersburg branch, 196140, Saint Petersburg, Pulkovskoe shosse, 65
NPF Iceberg-NT, 192007, Saint Petersburg, Ligovsky pr., 195


The paper is received on November 16, 2017


Abstract. In recent decades, radioholographic methods of antenna measurements are widely used in the antenna technology and radio astronomy. We consider a new method of the radioholographic signal recording for RATAN-600 radio telescope, which does not require any special phase-stabilized instrumentation. In the method proposed, the reference signal is formed with a radial movement of the reference element (shield) relative to the whole antenna, while the interferogram (hologram) is recorded using a conventional radio astronomy receiver as the feed carriage moves in the direction opposed to that of the reference shield. We give the scheme and the mathematical description of the new method of the radioholographic signal recording, as well as the results of the modeling of the reconstruction of the electrical field amplitude and phase distribution in the telescope aperture related to the positions of the main mirror shields. We estimate the characteristics of the source of the radioholographic signal required in order to provide the necessary degree of the time and space coherence. We found the optimal relation between the speeds of movement of the feed carriage and the reference shield, the spatial resolution a which can be achieved, and the maximum dimension D of the aperture being measured. According to our estimates, a is not larger than the size of a single shield, while D is more than 100 m and D = 150-200 m seems to be feasible. We present the first results of the application of the new method to the measurement of the antenna system “South sector + Flat reflector” of RATAN-600 radio telescope using the signal from a geostationary Earth satellite at the wavelength of 2.5 cm and in the autocollimation mode at the wavelengths of 1.8 cm and 1.0 cm. The repeatability of the performed radioholographic measurements is characterized by the correlation coefficient of 0.9 in amplitude and 0.7 in phase (radial position). Yet we estimate the accuracy of the method to be not better than 0.2 mm RMS, it is limited by the turbulence of the near-surface atmosphere layer during the daytime. At night, when the spatial phase variance of the near-surface layer is low, the expected method accuracy should be no worse than 0.1 mm RMS.

Key words: multielement radiotelescope, active surface, radioholographic measure­ments and adjustment.


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For citation:

V. B. Khaikin, M. K. Lebedev, A. M. Ripak. Method of the radio holographic inspection of the main mirror surface of RATAN-600 radiotelescope using the radial movement of the reference element. Zhurnal Radioelektroniki - Journal of Radio Electronics, 2017, No. 11. Available at http://jre.cplire.ru/jre/nov17/13/text.pdf. (In Russian)