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Proceedings Paper

Composite telescope technology
Author(s): Peter C. Chen; Douglas Rabin
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Paper Abstract

We report the development of optical mirrors based on polymer matrix composite materials. Advantages of this technology are low cost and versatility. By using appropriate combinations of polymers and various metallic and nonmetallic particles and fibers, the properties of the materials can be tailored to suit a wide variety of applications. We report the fabrication and testing of flat and curved mirrors made with metal powders, multiple mirrors replicated with high degree of uniformity from the same mandrels, cryogenic testing, mirrors made of ferromagnetic materials that can be actively or adaptively controlled by non-contact actuation, optics with very smooth surfaces made by replication, and by spincasting. We discuss development of a new generation of ultra-compact, low power active optics and 3D printing of athermal telescopes.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 July 2014
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 9151, Advances in Optical and Mechanical Technologies for Telescopes and Instrumentation, 915130 (18 July 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2057118
Show Author Affiliations
Peter C. Chen, Lightweight Telescopes, Inc. (United States)
The Catholic Univ. of America (United States)
NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Douglas Rabin, NASA Goddard Space Flight Ctr. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9151:
Advances in Optical and Mechanical Technologies for Telescopes and Instrumentation
Ramón Navarro; Colin R. Cunningham; Allison A. Barto, Editor(s)

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