25 September 2012 GAIA mock-up: an educational demonstrative GAIA model
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Abstract
Gaia is ESA's next-generation space mission aimed at global astrometry at the microarcsecond level. Its science case is devoted to the understanding of our Galaxy's structure, evolution and composition. The GAIA payload includes two identical telescopes separated by a Basic Angle whose variations in time must be measured with very high accuracy, to fulll the astrometry goal. To this purpose, an interferometric sub-system, the Basic Angle Monitoring Device (BAMD), has been introduced. The BAMD optical concept is based on a pair of laser beams per telescope, producing fringes on a dedicated CCD. The basic measurement principle of BAMD consists in monitoring the stability of the fringe pattern phase. We are developing a demonstrator of the BAMD for educational purposes, considered representative of the driving design concept for the Gaia microarcsecond astrometry. In this paper we describe the design guidelines and analyze some of the key elements related to the demonstration of the basic angle monitoring concept.
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Alberto Riva, Mario Gai, Davide Loreggia, Mario G. Lattanzi, Maria Teresa Crosta, Isidoro Sciarratta, "GAIA mock-up: an educational demonstrative GAIA model", Proc. SPIE 8449, Modeling, Systems Engineering, and Project Management for Astronomy V, 84491G (25 September 2012); doi: 10.1117/12.924896; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.924896
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