Abstract

Difficulties are encountered in attempting to obtain an instantaneous picture of the pattern of stellar shadow bands seen on the surface of a telescope objective. There is a close statistical relationship between these patterns and the scintillation of the total starlight received. By observing scintillation through a diaphragm having two holes with variable separation between them one can derive the Fourier spectrum of periodicities in the shadow pattern and the autocorrelation function of the pattern. A number of patterns and associated autocorrelation functions are illustrated. Some remarks are then made on the correlation between the scintillation of close double stars and the influence of telescope aperture upon it. Finally the analysis is generalized to show how a frequency analysis of the scintillation can yield a space-time autocorrelation function.

© 1955 Optical Society of America

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