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Proceedings Paper

Pointing and jitter control for the Eclipse mission
Author(s): Ronald A. Mayo; Victor A. Spector; Charles F. Lillie
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Paper Abstract

The ECLIPSE mission will carry out the first sensitive imaging survey of nearby planetary systems, including the detection and characterization of Jovian planets, exozodiacal dust disks and cool brown dwarfs in the solar neighborhood. This survey will be performed with a 1.8 meter optical telescope and a coronagraphic camera, with active wavefront control, designed to achieve contrast levels of 10-9 for bright objects centered on the coronagraph's occulting spot with an accuracy of 2 arcseconds (1σ) and a stability of 0.01 arcseconds (1σ). These requirements impose a number of significant challenges, including the need to: (1) Sense pointing errors to the 1 milli-arcsecond (mas) accuracy level, (2) Keep satellite jitter below 3 mas, (3) Design an attitude control system to meet the stringent pointing and pointing stability requirements, and (4) Avoid exciting satellite vibrational modes. Drawing on our experience with large space telescopes such as the Chandra X-ray Observatory, the Space Interferometry Mission and the Next Generation Space Telescope, we have designed an attitude control system for ECLIPSE that successfully meets these challenging requirements. This paper describes the trades and analyses that led up to our design, and its predicted performance.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 February 2003
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 4854, Future EUV/UV and Visible Space Astrophysics Missions and Instrumentation, (24 February 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.460028
Show Author Affiliations
Ronald A. Mayo, TRW Inc. (United States)
Victor A. Spector, TRW Inc. (United States)
Charles F. Lillie, TRW Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 4854:
Future EUV/UV and Visible Space Astrophysics Missions and Instrumentation
J. Chris Blades; Oswald H. W. Siegmund, Editor(s)

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