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29 September 2004 Starbug: enabling the smart focal plane
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We propose a new robotic system for positioning payloads such as pickoff mirrors, fibres or deployable IFUs on telescope focal planes. Based on a combination of concepts used in existing fibre positioning systems, the proposed system retains the advantages of each type of existing positioner, while eliminating many of the disadvantages. It employs micro-robotic actuators to independently and simultaneously position an arbitrary number of small payloads accurately on an arbitrarily large field plate and offers a cost-effective and multiply-redundant design for payload positioning systems suitable for use at Cassegrain or Nasmyth foci of large telescopes. Operation in cryogenic environments, positioning accuracies of a few microns, simultaneous movement of arbitrary numbers of positioners and the removal of many movement constraints are some of the advantages offered. We demonstrate a prototype positioner for the system.
© (2004) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Andrew McGrath and Anna Moore "Starbug: enabling the smart focal plane", Proc. SPIE 5495, Astronomical Structures and Mechanisms Technology, (29 September 2004);


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