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Proceedings Paper

Optical telescopes and enclosures for ground-based interferometry: the CHARA array
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Paper Abstract

The telescope requirements of optical interferometry are somewhat different from conventional astronomy. The need for multiple units (in the CHARA case initially five, eventually seven) accentuates the importance of cost control, and at the same time provides opportunity for cost savings by careful procurement and production practices. Modern ideas about telescope enclosures offer significantly reduced dome seeing, but it is difficult to capture these benefits at low cost. The CHARA group has followed a series of design and bid procedures intended to optimize the costperformance of the telescope+enclosures. These have led to a compact but massive telescope design, blending modern and classical features, an unusual mirror blank selection process (directly ompeting several mirror blank technologies) , and a novel telescope enclosure concept which allows a continuous trade between wind protection and natural ventilation. This contribution will review and motivate the design decisions and show the resulting equipment and facilities.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 July 1998
PDF: 9 pages
Proc. SPIE 3350, Astronomical Interferometry, (24 July 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.317163
Show Author Affiliations
Stephen T. Ridgway, National Optical Astronomy Observatories (United States)
Lawrence D. Barr, Barr Engineering Arts (United States)
M. Liang, National Optical Astronomy Observatories (United States)
William G. Bagnuolo Jr., Georgia State Univ. (United States)
W. I. Hartkopf, Georgia State Univ. (United States)
Harold A. McAlister, Georgia State Univ. (United States)
Mark A. Shure, Georgia State Univ. (United States)
Laszlo Sturmann, Georgia State Univ. (United States)
Theo Armand ten Brummelaar, Georgia State Univ. (United States)
Nils Henning Turner, Georgia State Univ. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3350:
Astronomical Interferometry
Robert D. Reasenberg, Editor(s)

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