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7 March 2014 First light with a carbon fiber reinforced polymer 0.4 meter telescope
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Proceedings Volume 8978, MEMS Adaptive Optics VIII; 897805 (2014)
Event: SPIE MOEMS-MEMS, 2014, San Francisco, California, United States
For the passed several years, the Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) has been investigating the use of Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) material in the construction of a telescope assembly including the optical components. The NRL, Sandia National Laboratories (SNL), and Composite Mirror Applications, Inc. (CMA) have jointly assembled a prototype telescope and achieved “first light” images with a CFRP 0.4 m aperture telescope. CFRP offers several advantages over traditional materials such as creating structures that are lightweight and low coefficient of thermal expansion and conductivity. The telescope’s primary and secondary mirrors are not made from glass, but CFRP, as well. The entire telescope weighs approximately 10 kg while a typical telescope of this size would weigh quite a bit more. We present the achievement of “first light” with this telescope demonstrating the imaging capabilities of this prototype and the optical surface quality of the mirrors with images taken during a day’s quiescent periods.
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Christopher C. Wilcox, Freddie Santiago, Matthew E. Jungwirth, Ty Martinez, Sergio R. Restaino, Brett Bagwell, and Robert Romeo "First light with a carbon fiber reinforced polymer 0.4 meter telescope", Proc. SPIE 8978, MEMS Adaptive Optics VIII, 897805 (7 March 2014);

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