31 August 2005 Using ISS to develop telescope technology
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Abstract
Future space telescope missions concepts have introduced new technologies such as precision formation flight, optical metrology, and segmented mirrors. These new technologies require demonstration and validation prior to deployment in final missions such as the James Webb Space Telescope, Terrestrial Planet Finder, and Darwin. Ground based demonstrations do not provide the precision necessary to obtain a high level of confidence in the technology; precursor free flyer space missions suffer from the same problems as the final missions. Therefore, this paper proposes the use of the International Space Station as an intermediate research environment where these technologies can be developed, demonstrated, and validated. The ISS provides special resources, such as human presence, communications, power, and a benign atmosphere which directly reduce the major challenges of space technology maturation: risk, complexity, cost, remote operations, and visibility. Successful design of experiments for use aboard the space station, by enabling iterative research and supporting multiple scientists, can further reduce the effects of these challenges of space technology maturation. This paper presents results of five previous MIT Space Systems Laboratory experiments aboard the Space Shuttle, MIR, and the ISS to illustrate successful technology maturation aboard these facilities.
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Alvar Saenz-Otero, David W. Miller, "Using ISS to develop telescope technology", Proc. SPIE 5899, UV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes: Innovative Technologies and Concepts II, 58990J (31 August 2005); doi: 10.1117/12.615571; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.615571
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