Chaminade Resort & Spa. One Chaminade Lane, Santa Cruz, CA 95065

Held at the Chaminade Hotel  November 16th – 19th, 2023. Registration Deadline October 30th, 2023.

You can now register here!

The Center for Adaptive Optics Fall Science Retreat provides a forum for researchers in the adaptive optics field to share current results and plan future collaborations.

The CfAO Fall Retreat this year will center around four workshops, with overlapping themes in adaptive optics. This is an excellent opportunity for researchers to exchange ideas and make progress in developing the technology of AO for both astronomy and vision science applications.

The workshops are:

1- Adaptive Secondary Mirror Workshop

This workshop is centered on new technologies for adaptive secondary mirrors (ASMs). This year, the workshop will focus on testbeds for ASM technology development and methods for ASM optical testing. We will be sharing new developments, specific lab testing/verification of systems/components, and the status of new ASM projects. There will be focused discussions about key results, calibrations for coming systems, and new approaches, including the underlying requirements, for testing.

2- Simulations & Software

This workshop will focus on the latest developments in AO simulation capabilities relevant to both astronomy and vision science, including analytic and end-to-end simulation approaches. We will review the landscape of open-source and commercially available tools as well as open areas for development. We will end by discussing how AO simulation tools can be integrated seamlessly into AO testbed and observatory environments.

3- Workshop on Adaptive Optics in Vision Science & Microscopy

Adaptive optics is an important tool for high resolution imaging of the retina of the eye, and increasingly in microscopy. This first part of this workshop will focus on future needs for wavefront control (e.g. using spatial light modulators) and opportunities for driving down the cost of wavefront sensors in collaboration with the astronomical AO community. The second part of this workshop will discuss the latest technology developments and applications of AO for microscopy, superresolution imaging, vision science, and ophthalmology.

4- Wavefront Sensing in the VLT/ELT era

This year’s CfAO Fall Retreat will be held jointly with the Wavefront Sensing in the VLT/ELT era meeting. This workshop will focus on areas of VLT/ELT AO technology development that overlap with the vision science & microscopy communities as well as the Keck high contrast imaging community. 

5- Special Session: Keck High Contrast Imaging Testbed Concept Development

W.M. Keck Observatory’s Strategic Plan calls for a high contrast imaging testbed to develop the wavefront sensing & control and coronagraphic capabilities that will be needed in the era of TMT/GMT/ELT as well as future NASA missions such as the Habitable Worlds Observatory. In this special session, the Keck high contrast community and its world-wide partners will come together to define the goals and requirements of this new system, including its opto-mechanical architecture, software architecture, and interfaces with the Keck II AO system and science instruments.

Keck Observatory © Laurie Hatch,


Package Conference
Center (3 nights
Total (3 nights)

Full Package in Single Room
Meeting, all meals, and double room lodging

$200 $1755 $1955

Full Package in Shared Room
Meeting, all meals, and double room lodging

$200 $1155 $1355

Guest: Bring a guest (non-participating in the
meeting). Includes meals and lodging in shared room

$1155 $1155

Half-Day Commuter: Meeting and 2 meals included*

$200 $570 $770

Full-Day Commuter: Meeting and all meals included*

$200 $705 $905

* The complete half-day commuter package includes registration fees and 2 meals per day (lunch and dinner) for the duration of the program.

** The complete full-day commuter package includes registration fees and 3 meals per day for the duration of the program.

Shared Room: We have a limited number of shared rooms for those who are already coming with a relation or partner (pending on availability). While we will not be pairing roommates for this event, shared rooms are available for participants who wish to make their own roommate plans. Please select the ‘Single Room’ option if you are attending solo.

Attention International Travelers: Attendees must arrange for medical insurance to cover the period of the event. Since emergency-room visits in the US can cost thousands of dollars for those who are uninsured, the insurance is well worthwhile. Traveler’s medical insurance can be obtained online or through a trusted travel agent.

Scientific Organizing Committee

Rebecca Jensen-Clem, UC Santa Cruz, 

Phil Hinz, University of California Observatories,

Jessica Lu,
UC Berkeley,

Mark Chun, Univ. of Hawaii Institute for Astronomy,

Michael Fitzgerald,

Nicole Putnam, SUNY College of Optometry,

Robert Zawadzki, UC Davis,

Steph Sallum, UC Irvine,

Julian Christou, NOIR Lab,

Max Millar-Blanchaer, UC Santa Barbara,

Quinn Konopacky, UC San Diego,

University of California Observatories

Program Lead: Graseilah Coolidge Tel: ‭(831) 316-3019‬

Please contact us at if you have any special needs regarding rooming and registration. For more information about the Resort Amenities, location and directions, please visit the Chaminade’s website.