5 March 2003 An Engineering Concept and Enabling Technologies for a Large Single Aperture Far-Infrared Observatory (SAFIR)
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"To take the next step in exploring this important part of the spectrum [30-300μm], the committee recommends the Single Aperture Far-Infrared Observatory (SAFIR)." - Astronomy and Astrophysics in the New Millennium, 2001. In response to this recommendation, we have undertaken a study of the enabling technologies for a large single aperture far-infrared telescope such as SAFIR. A broad list of science investigations was produced and used to generate an explicit list of science requirements, from which top-level engineering requirements were derived. From these requirements, we developed a conceptual design for the SAFIR observatory based on NGST's current designs. A detailed analysis has been made of the changes and technologies necessary to produce SAFIR. Crucial technologies requiring innovation include lightweight deployable optics, cryogenic cooling of optical elements and instruments, and large arrays of sensitive detectors. Cryogen-free refrigeration technologies are necessary for SAFIR's long mission lifetime, and will have to provide significant (~100mW) cooling power at 4K to cool the mirrors while providing very low temperatures (~50mK) for detector arrays. The detector arrays require wide wavelength coverage, thousands of continuum elements, and compatibility with broadband and spectroscopic instruments.
© (2003) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Michael James Amato, Dominic J. Benford, Harvey S. Moseley, and Juan Roman "An Engineering Concept and Enabling Technologies for a Large Single Aperture Far-Infrared Observatory (SAFIR)", Proc. SPIE 4850, IR Space Telescopes and Instruments, (5 March 2003); doi: 10.1117/12.461943; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.461943


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