A Super-high Angular Resolution Principle for Coded-mask X-ray Imaging Beyond the Diffraction Limit of Single Pinhole

Zhang, Chen
Zhang, Shuang Nan
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High angular resolution X-ray imaging is always demanded by astrophysics and solar physics, which can be realized by coded-mask imaging with very long mask-detector distance in principle. Previously the diffraction-interference effect has been thought to degrade coded-mask imaging performance dramatically at low energy end with very long mask-detector distance. In this work the diffraction-interference effect is described with numerical calculations, and the diffraction-interference cross correlation reconstruction method (DICC) is developed in order to overcome the imaging performance degradation. Based on the DICC, a super-high angular resolution principle (SHARP) for coded-mask X-ray imaging is proposed. The feasibility of coded mask imaging beyond the diffraction limit of single pinhole is demonstrated with simulations. With the specification that the mask element size of 50* 50 square micrometers and the mask-detector distance of 50 m, the achieved angular resolution is 0.32 arcsec above about 10 keV, and 0.36 arcsec at 1.24 keV where diffraction can not be neglected. The on-axis source location accuracy is better than 0.02 arcsec. Potential applications for solar observations and wide-field X-ray monitors are also shortly discussed.
Comment: 12 pages, 7 figures, accepted for publication in "Chinese Journal of Astronomy & Astrophysics"