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Proceedings Paper

System concepts for a large UV/optical/IR telescope on the moon
Author(s): Max E. Nein; Billy Davis
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Paper Abstract

To assess the systems and technological requirements for constructing lunar telescopes in conjunction with the buildup of a lunar base for scientific exploration and as a waypoint for travel to Mars, the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center conducted concept studies of a 16-m-aperture large lunar telescope (LLT) and a 4-m-aperture precursor telescope, both operating in the UV/visible/IR spectral region. The feasibility of constructing a large telescope on the lunar surface is assessed, and its systems and subsystems are analyzed. Telescope site selection, environmental effects, and launch and assembly scenarios are also evaluated. It is argued that key technical drivers for the LLT must be tested in situ by precursor telescopes to evaluate such areas as the operations and long-term reliability of active optics, radiation protection of instruments, lunar dust mitigation, and thermal shielding of the telescope systems. For a manned lunar outpost or an LLT to become a reality, a low-cost dependable transportation system must be developed.

Paper Details

Date Published: 1 September 1991
PDF: 13 pages
Proc. SPIE 1494, Space Astronomical Telescopes and Instruments, (1 September 1991); doi: 10.1117/12.46717
Show Author Affiliations
Max E. Nein, NASA/Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)
Billy Davis, NASA/Marshall Space Flight Ctr. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 1494:
Space Astronomical Telescopes and Instruments
Pierre Y. Bely; James B. Breckinridge, Editor(s)

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