Form 9.B Project Summary

Chron: 972439

Proposal Number: 16.02-2786

Project Title: Light-Weight, Low-Power, Thermally Stable, Large-Field-of-Regard High-Accuracy Gimbal

Technical Abstract (Limit 200 words)

The proposed innovation applies to thermally stable, large-field-of-regard, high-accuracy gimbal technology for NASA interferometer applications such as SIM, NMI, SITE and ISIS. The classical approach is a solid ULE mirror in a mirror cell suspended in an external gimbal ring with actuators located outside the mirror’s perimeter. The moving elements weigh 46.5 kg and the whole mechanism weighs 63.4 kg. The proposed innovation allows direct attachment of flexure and actuator assemblies to a lightweighted mirror substrate via five INVAR backplates bonded to the mirror’s ribs to maintain 1/100 wave RMS surface quality over a +-30 degC temperature range. The attachment technique minimizes and isolates forces and torques due to attachment and CTE mismatches from the first surface. The combination of light-weighting and backplate attachment reduces the mass of the mirror by 65%, eliminates the mirror cell and external gimbal ring and reduces the footprint of the suspension and actuators for a smaller, lighter support structure. The total weight savings is more than 30 kg. It also increases suspension lateral load capability by a factor of 2, reduces heat dissipation at the actuators by more than 90% and allows operation at higher control bandwidths.

Potential Commercial Applications (Limit 200 words)

Primary applications are interferometric missions for NASA and other advanced astrometrics, including SITE, SIM, NME and ISIS. This technology would also be an improvement for airborne infra-red observatories similar to SIRTF and OAMP which require light steering mirrors with high optical quality.

Name and Address of Principal Investigator (Name,

Organization Name, Mail Address, City/State/Zip)

Lawrence M. Germann

Left Hand Design Corporation

7901 Oxford Road

Longmont , CO 80503

Name and Address of Offeror (Firm Name, Mail Address,

City/State/Zip)

Lawrence M. Germann

Left Hand Design Corporation

7901 Oxford Road

Longmont , CO 80503