Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Operational Sciences

First Advisor

Kenneth W. Bauer, Jr., PhD


This dissertation had three objectives. The first objective was to develop image quality metrics that characterize Adaptive Optics System (AOS) performance. The second objective was to delineate control settings that maximize AOS performance. The third objective was to identify and characterize trade-offs between fully and partially compensated adaptive. For the first objective, three candidate image quality metrics were considered: the Strehl ratio, a novel metric that modifies the Strehl ratio by integrating the modulus of the average system optical transfer function to a 'noise-effective-cutoff' frequency at which some specified image spectrum signal-to-noise-ratio level is attained, and the noise-effective-cutoff frequency. It was shown that these metrics are correlated with the root-mean-square error between the detected image and the associated diffraction limited image and that they have traits that make them desirable for AOS performance metrics. For the second objective, optimum closed loop bandwidth settings were determined as a function of target object light levels and atmospheric seeing conditions. A strategy for selecting the closed loop bandwidth to provide robust system performance was also developed. For the third research objective, a qualitative assessment of trade-offs between fully compensated and partially compensated adaptive optics systems was provided.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number