Proc. SPIE. 10698, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2018: Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter Wave
KEYWORDS: Signal to noise ratio, Observatories, Telescopes, Mirrors, Optical fabrication, Space telescopes, Infrared radiation, Infrared telescopes, Optical instrument design, James Webb Space Telescope
The WFIRST Mission is the next large astrophysical observatory for NASA after the James Webb Space Telescope and is the top priority mission from the 2010 National Academy of Sciences’ decadal survey. The WFIRST OTA includes the inherited primary and secondary mirrors with precision metering structures that are to be integrated to new mirror assemblies to provide optical feeds to the two WFIRST instruments. We present here: (1) the results for the review of the inherited hardware for WFIRST through a thorough technical pedigree process, (2) the status of the effort to establish the capability of the telescope to perform at a cooler operational temperature of 265K, and (3) the status of the work in requirement development for OTA to incorporate the inherited hardware, and (4) the path forward.
The Wide-Field Infrared Survey Telescope (WFIRST) mission is the next large astrophysics observatory for NASA after the James Webb Space Telescope and is the top priority mission from the 2010 National Academy of Sciences’ decadal survey. The WFIRST Optical Telescope Assembly (OTA) includes inherited composite support structures that were originally designed and tested for room temperature operation; however, the WFIRST mission will require operation at colder temperatures to achieve sufficient sensitivity for the infrared wavelengths. We will present the results and conclusions of testing completed at the coupon and engineering model level to verify that the inherited composite structures will maintain mechanical integrity and performance over the required temperature range. The testing included: (1) characterization testing of constituent material coupons, (2) thermal cycling and static load testing of a representative aft metering structure (AMS) and forward metering structure (FMS), and (3) thermal cycling and dynamic testing of a representative secondary mirror assembly (SMA).