Correction of a space telescope active primary mirror using adaptive optics in a woofer-tweeter configuration
Allen, Matthew R.
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The Department of Defense seeks to improve space-based imaging capabilities by building larger space telescopes designed for higher orbits in order to provide timely accurate imagery to the military and national decision makers. Satellites have mass and volume constraints due to the limited size of the launch vehicle. Larger aperture imagery satellites require lightweight deployable segmented primary mirrors to meet mass and volume constraints. Lightweight segmented mirrors exist but lack the structure and mass necessary for high-quality optical performance. This research investigates using a deformable mirror with a large lightweight active primary mirror to improve optical performance. Control techniques are applied to simultaneously manipulate an active primary mirror segment and deformable mirror in a woofer-tweeter configuration. Computer simulations and experiments using woofer-tweeter control techniques show reduction of residual wavefront error attributed to the primary mirror. A woofer-tweeter gradient control technique was shown to experimentally reduce wavefront error by 24% using the Naval Postgraduate School’s 3-m diameter segmented mirror telescope test bed. The addition of a deformable mirror to an active space telescope in a woofer-tweeter configuration is a technically feasible option for a large-aperture telescope design, and can reduce primary mirror requirements potentially reducing cost.
RightsThis publication is a work of the U.S. Government as defined in Title 17, United States Code, Section 101. Copyright protection is not available for this work in the United States.
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