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Proceedings Paper

Advances in the active alignment system for the IXO optics
Author(s): Mark D. Freeman; Paul B. Reid; William Podgorski; David Caldwell
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Paper Abstract

The next large x-ray astrophysics mission launched will likely include soft x-ray spectroscopy as a primary capability. A requirement to fulfill the science goals of such a mission is a large-area x-ray telescope focusing sufficient x-ray flux to perform high-resolution spectroscopy with reasonable observing times. The IXO soft x-ray telescope effort in the US is focused on a tightly nested, thin glass, segmented mirror design. Fabrication of the glass segments with the required surface accuracy is a fundamental challenge; equally challenging will be the alignment of the ~7000 secondary mirror segments with their corresponding primary mirrors, and co-alignment of the mirror pairs. We have developed a system to perform this alignment using a combination of a coordinate measuring machine (CMM) and a double-pass Hartmann test alignment system. We discuss the technique, its ability to correct low-order mirror errors, and results of a recent pair alignment including progress toward the required alignment accuracy of < 2 arcseconds, and discuss the influence of the alignment process on mirror figure. We then look forward toward its scalability to the task of building the IXO telescope.

Paper Details

Date Published: 29 July 2010
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 7732, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2010: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray, 773243 (29 July 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.857424
Show Author Affiliations
Mark D. Freeman, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
Paul B. Reid, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
William Podgorski, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)
David Caldwell, Harvard-Smithsonian Ctr. for Astrophysics (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7732:
Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2010: Ultraviolet to Gamma Ray
Monique Arnaud; Stephen S. Murray; Tadayuki Takahashi, Editor(s)

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