Speckle Nulling Through a Single-Mode Fiber

Speckle nulling is an established technique for destructively interfering starlight with itself by using a deformable mirror to modulate the phase of the light. In Fall 2022, I led the the effort to perform the first on-sky demonstration of speckle nulling through a single-mode fiber with the Keck Planet Imager and Characterizer (KPIC) instrument. It is also the first demonstration of speckle nulling that uses a high-resolution spectrograph simultaneously for wavefront sensing and for science-grade spectra.

Because speckle nulling relies on a series of probes, we may be able to constrain the level of coherent light based on how it interferes with the probes. This project is currently in-progress, but improving constraints on the coherent light may be helpful in removing the effects of leaked starlight on the data.