We have developed a thermal-optical-mechanical model of a representative sunshield and telescope assembly,
appropriate to 10-m class far-infrared large space telescopes such as SAFIR, SPECs, SPIRIT, and CMBPol. The model
provides a tool for sensitivity analysis for design parameters, including material properties and structural configuration,
provides performance predictions, and has been used to direct technology development for large space telescope
structures and materials.
The sunshield model incorporates a flight-like design support structure for the five-layer combined sunshield and V-groove
radiator, including temperature-dependent thermal, mechanical, and optical properties for the structure and
deployed sunshield layers. Heat lift from mechanical cryocoolers is included, in fixed-temperature or power-balance
conditions, at arbitrary points on the sunshields and support structure.
The model properly accounts the wavelength dependence of radiative transfer between surfaces of widely different
temperature, which capacity has not been available from commercial codes for the infrared thermal band (source
temperatures 300 K-15 K) until very recently. A simplified model of the zodiacal background to be experienced at the
Sun-Earth L2 point is used which, with the wavelength-dependent thermal transfer, improves the fidelity of temperature
and heat lift requirements predictions for the coldest sunshield layer and telescope assembly.