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Dual Fabry–Perot filter for measurement of CO rotational spectra: design and application to the CO spectrum of Venus

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Abstract

We present the design of a harmonic resonant filter that can be used with a Fourier transform spectrometer (FTS) for simultaneous measurement of a series of lines in the CO rotational ladder. To enable studies of both broad CO absorptions in Venus and modestly red-shifted CO emission from external galaxies, relatively broad (approximately 10–30-GHz FWHM) transmission passbands are desirable. Because a single low-finesse Fabry–Perot (FP) etalon has insufficient interline rejection, a dual-FP etalon was considered. Such a design provides significantly better interband rejection and somewhat more flattopped transmission spikes. A prototype filter of this type, made of two thin silicon disks spaced by an air gap, has been constructed and used with our FTS at the Caltech Submillimeter Observatory for simultaneous measurement of the four submillimeter CO transitions in the atmosphere of Venus that are accessible from the ground.

© 2000 Optical Society of America

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