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Chapter 7:
Small Mirror Mounting Techniques
In this chapter we address a variety of techniques commonly used to constrain mirrors in the diameter range from a few cm to about 24 in. (61 cm). At the small end of this range, the mounts tend to be very simple; techniques typically used for mounting lenses may suffice. As would be expected, complexity increases with mirror size. We intentionally omit mountings for larger mirrors such as would be used in state-of-the-art astronomical applications because proper treatment of that aspect of mirror mounting would far exceed page limitations. General techniques considered comprise mechanically clamping, elastomeric bonding, optically contacting, and mounting on flexures. Mountings appropriate for non-metallic and metallic mirror substrates are included. In general, we progress from smaller to larger sized optics. It is pointed out that many mounting problems sometimes thought to exist only with the largest mirrors (i.e., those beyond the scope of this book) actually exist with small mirrors; the difference is one of scale. In some contemporary designs involving "small" size, but high performance, these same problems are of sufficient magnitude to warrant special consideration.
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