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14 June 2006 Photon sieve telescope
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In designing next-generation, ultra-large (>20m) apertures for space, many current concepts involve compactable, curved membrane reflectors. Here we present the idea of using a flat diffractive element that requires no out-of-plane deformation and so is much simpler to deploy. The primary is a photon sieve - a diffractive element consisting of a large number of precisely positioned holes distributed according to an underlying Fresnel Zone Plate (FZP) geometry. The advantage of the photon sieve over the FZP is that all the regions are connected, so the membrane substrate under simple tension can avoid buckling. Also, the hole distribution can be varied to generate any conic or apodization for specialized telescope requirements such as exo-solar planet detection. We have designed and tested numerous photon sieves as telescope primaries. Some of these have over 10 million holes in a 0.1 m diameter aperture and all of them give diffraction limited imaging. While photon sieves are diffractive elements and thus suffer from dispersion, we will present two successful solutions to this problem.
© (2006) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Geoff Andersen and Drew Tullson "Photon sieve telescope", Proc. SPIE 6265, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation I: Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter, 626523 (14 June 2006);


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