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Proceedings Paper

A new look for Gemini: rapid-cured composites for an exchangeable top-end
Author(s): Stan Miziarski; Andrew McGrath; N. Milby; D. E. Brosius; M. J. von Bertouch
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Paper Abstract

The Gemini-sponsored WFMOS Feasibility Study investigated a wide-field, prime focus installation for the Gemini telescopes. As constructed, the Gemini design allows for multiple, interchangeable telescope top-ends, although this capability has never been implemented. Constrained by a particularly challenging top-end mass budget, we proposed a new top end specific to WFMOS, employing a carbon fiber reinforced plastic structure. An innovative, out-of-autoclave manufacturing process using balanced pressure and liquid heating and cooling enables high-specification, large CFRP structures to be constructed suitable for incorporation as fundamental parts of telescope structures. Advantages include low weight, enhanced overall telescope stiffness, and cost-effective construction with on-site final assembly. We describe the manufacturing process and the proposed top-end structure, as well as highlighting the advantages of this type of structure and material for large and extremely large telescopes in general.

Paper Details

Date Published: 6 July 2006
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 6273, Optomechanical Technologies for Astronomy, 627332 (6 July 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.670973
Show Author Affiliations
Stan Miziarski, Anglo-Australian Observatory (Australia)
Andrew McGrath, Anglo-Australian Observatory (Australia)
N. Milby, Quickstep Technologies Pty. Ltd. (Australia)
D. E. Brosius, Quickstep Technologies Pty. Ltd. (Australia)
M. J. von Bertouch, Quickstep Technologies Pty. Ltd. (Australia)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6273:
Optomechanical Technologies for Astronomy
Eli Atad-Ettedgui; Joseph Antebi; Dietrich Lemke, Editor(s)

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