To realize the full performance potential of the new generation of ground based telescopes, whether optical or IR, enclosure seeing control and telescope temperature control must be optimized. While the techniques for optimizing seeing are well known, EOS' IceStorm Enclosures, specifically developed for interferometric applications, introduced a number of novel physical implementations of these known techniques. A 9.5m prototype IceStorm enclosure was assembled and extensively tested in 2002, including independent testing of thermal performance. Four enclosures have since been completed, one of which was installed at the EOS Space Center on Mt Stromlo, Australia in 2003. Design principles for the IceStorm enclosure and thermal test results are described, and the application of these principles to larger enclosures is discussed.
The NASA Outrigger Telescope Project is a ground-based component of NASA's Navigator Program. The proposed project would utilize four to six 1.8-meter telescopes with co-rotating domes configured as an interferometer. One of the project’s scientific goals is the detection of exoplanets, which would be accomplished with long baseline narrow-angle astrometry. This astrometry mode would be able to detect Uranus mass planets up to 60 light years away. The requirements of narrow-angle astrometry, both technically and operationally, levy requirements on the telescopes and enclosures, including, for example, wavefront quality, pivot stability, and slew speed. This paper will describe these requirements and how they were achieved in the design. It will also discuss the testing and verification of these requirements. Actual telescope performance as tested at EOS Technologies is presented elsewhere in these proceedings.