Stabilizing a fabry–perot etalon peak to 3 cm s1 for spectrograph calibration

C. Schwab, J. Stürmer, Y. V. Gurevich, T. Führer, S. K. Lamoreaux, T. Walther, A. Quirrenbach

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)


We present a method of frequency stabilizing a broadband etalon that can serve as a high-precision wavelength calibrator for an echelle spectrograph. Using a laser to probe the Doppler-free saturated absorption of the rubidium D2 line, we stabilize one etalon transmission peak directly to the rubidium frequency. The rubidium transition is an established frequency standard and has been used to lock lasers to fractional stabilities of <1012, a level of accuracy far exceeding the demands of radial velocity (RV) searches for exoplanets. The stabilized bandwidth depends on the dispersion characteristics of the etalon. We describe a simple setup designed specifically for use at an observatory and demonstrate that we can stabilize the etalon peak to a relative precision of <1010; this is equivalent to 3 cm s1 RV precision.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)880-889
Number of pages10
JournalPublications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
Issue number955
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sep 2015


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