26 June 2006 The Advanced Technology Solar Telescope enclosure
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Abstract
Telescope enclosure design is based on an increasingly standard set of criteria. Enclosures must provide failsafe protection in a harsh environment for an irreplaceable piece of equipment; must allow effective air flushing to minimize local seeing while still attenuating wind-induced vibration of the telescope; must reliably operate so that the dome is never the reason for observatory down time; must provide access to utilities, lifting devices and support facilities; and they must be affordable within the overall project budget. The enclosure for the Advanced Technology Solar Telescope (ATST) has to satisfy all these challenging requirements plus one more. To eliminate so-called external dome seeing, the exterior surfaces of the enclosure must be maintained at or just below ambient air temperature while being subjected to the full solar loading of an observing day. Further complicating the design of the ATST enclosure and support facilities are the environmental sensitivities and high construction costs at the selected site - the summit of Haleakala on the island of Maui, Hawaii. Previous development work has determined an appropriate enclosure shape to minimize solar exposure while allowing effective interior flushing, and has demonstrated the feasibility of controlling the exterior skin temperature with an active cooling system. This paper presents the evolution of the design since site selection and how the enclosure and associated thermal systems have been tailored to the particular climatic and terrain conditions of the site. Also discussed are load-reduction strategies that have been identified through thermal modeling, CFD modeling, and other analyses to refine and economize the thermal control systems.
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L. Phelps, L. Phelps, J. Barr, J. Barr, N. Dalrymple, N. Dalrymple, M. Fraser, M. Fraser, R. Hubbard, R. Hubbard, J. Wagner, J. Wagner, M. Warner, M. Warner, } "The Advanced Technology Solar Telescope enclosure", Proc. SPIE 6267, Ground-based and Airborne Telescopes, 62673E (26 June 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.672167; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.672167
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