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23 July 2008 Stable flexure mounting of a MEMS deformable mirror for the GPI Planet Imager
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Small deformable mirrors (DMs) produced using microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) techniques have been used in thermally stable, bench-top laboratory environments. With advances in MEMS DM technology, a variety of field applications are becoming more common, such as the Gemini Planet Imager's (GPI) adaptive optics system. Instruments at the Gemini Observatory operate in conditions where fluctuating ambient temperature, varying gravity orientations and humidity and dust can have a significant affect on DM performance. As such, it is crucial that the mechanical design of the MEMS DM be tailored to the environment. GPI's approach has been to mount the MEMS DM using high performance optical mounting techniques rather than a typical laboratory set-up. This paper discusses the design of the opto-mechanical mounting scheme for a 4096 actuator MEMS DM, developed by Boston Micromachines Corporation for use in the GPI adaptive optics system. Flexures have been incorporated into the DM mount to reduce deformations on the optical surface due to thermal fluctuations. These flexures have also been sized to maintain alignment under varying gravity vector orientations. Finally, a system for environmentally sealing the mirror has been designed to prevent degradation due to humidity effects. A plan for testing the mechanical mount to ensure that it meets GPI's performance and environmental requirements is also presented.
© (2008) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
Alexis Hill, Darren Erickson, Joeleff Fitzsimmons, Paul Bierden, Steven Cornelissen, and Dave Palmer "Stable flexure mounting of a MEMS deformable mirror for the GPI Planet Imager", Proc. SPIE 7018, Advanced Optical and Mechanical Technologies in Telescopes and Instrumentation, 70181F (23 July 2008);

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