CfAO Fall Science
Retreat 2020

October 26th - 30th, 2020

Changed to virtual meeting format for 2020 due to Covid-19 pandemic. This year, to avoid requiring travel of attendees, we have determined it best to hold the workshops remotely, via Zoom. Unfortunately this will mean we forgo the beautiful setting of Lake Arrowhead, but hopefully only for this year! On the bright side, this gives us the opportunity to do some extraordinary things like have easy world-wide participation, and zero registration cost.

The Fall Retreat provides a forum for researchers in the adaptive optics field to share current results and plan future collaborations. This year's program will center around three workshops with overlapping schedules, including joint and plenary sessions. In addition, invited guest speakers from each of the workshops will address the entire Retreat audience in plenary presentations. This is an excellent opportunity for researchers in adaptive optics to exchange ideas and make progress in developing AO for both astronomical and vision sciences application.

Retreat in session / Registration is now closed.


Getting to know your AO System through Simulations and Observations
Organizers: Jessica Lu, Michael Fitzgerald, and Rebecca Jensen-Clem

In-depth understanding of the AO system response and turbulence properties is essential for optimizing AO system performance, PSF-reconstruction and designing AO systems for the future. This workshop will focus on how we can deploy AO software, characterize existing AO systems and benchmark simulation codes using a variety of on-sky experiments and bench calibrations. For instance, one focus will be focal plane wavefront-sensing techniques employed in the high-contrast regime to estimate system performance and validate error budgets. We will also address how to decompose different sources of aberrations (i.e. dome seeing, instrumental aberrations, atmospheric turbulence). Finally, we will explore the latest developments in AO operations software technology relevant to both astronomy and vision science.

Workshop on Adaptive Optics in Vision Science
Organizers: Robert Zawadzki and Nicole Putnam

Adaptive optics is becoming an important tool for high resolution imaging of the retina of the eye, both in basic research and now increasingly for clinical use. This workshop will cover the challenges for achieving AO correction in the various imaging techniques in scanning ophthalmology. There will be several opportunities to overlap with the other workshops and to interact with AO scientists in the astronomical field.

Workshop on Adaptive Secondary Mirror Technologies and Lab Validation/Experiments
Organizers: Mark Chun and Phil Hinz

This workshop is centered on new technologies for adaptive secondary mirrors and lab testing, integration, and calibrations efforts. We will be sharing new developments in technologies for ASM and specific techniques being used and developed for lab testing/verification of systems/components. There will be focused discussions about key results and calibrations from current systems and new approaches and the underlying requirements for the tests.


Attendees are given the option of presenting virtual posters - the rough equivalent of a physical poster in the social hour area. Each presenter will be given 1 minute in a plenary "poster pop" session. The posters will be grouped into virtual breakout rooms in Zoom for interaction with attendees. Attendees are randomly assigned to breakouts initially, then allowed to "wander" amongst the poster groups. Depending on the number of posters, the whole session may last from one to two hours. More details will be provided as the retreat date approaches.

Software Hackathon

The organizers of the "Getting to know your AO system" workshop will be hosting a software hackathon. Last year our hackathon topic was AO Telemetry and everyone got their hands on some real telemetry from the Keck AO system and got to play with it. For this year possibilities are:

  • Machine learning for AO — we would need a tutorial (I have a grad on this topic who could help) and then there could be LOTS to play with here.
  • AO telemetry again (we still have lots to learn!)
  • AO Simulation Codes — tutorials, write up examples (as we practice), simulate your AO system
  • Sim vs. Real — we pick an AO system with an existing error budget and an existing simulation and pick it apart through detailed comparisons/discussion.
  • Visualization for AO — make animations, new and interesting figures to look at our more complex AO data, etc.