Demonstration of a 0.5-m ultralightweight mirror for use at geosynchronous orbit

Dave Baiocchi, J. H. Burge, B. Cuerden

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


Future space telescopes will require apertures that are larger than the current state of the art, yet fit within the exiting launch restrictions on size and mass. The mass can be reduced by using a thin flexible substrate for the optical surface and a rigid, lightweight frame with actuators for support. The accuracy of the optical surface is actively maintained by adjusting the actuators using feedback from wavefront measurements. We have designed, built and tested a 0.5-m demonstration mirror for use in geosynchronous Earth-imaging systems. The mirror has an areal density of 5 kg/m2 and is the lightest mirror we have made using the thin substrate design. This paper discusses the design, fabrication and performance of the 0.5-m mirror.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)86-95
Number of pages10
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 2001
EventOptical Manufacturing and Testing IV - San Diego, CA, United States
Duration: Jul 31 2001Aug 2 2001


  • Gossamer optics
  • Lightweight mirrors
  • Space mirrors
  • Thin glass membranes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


Dive into the research topics of 'Demonstration of a 0.5-m ultralightweight mirror for use at geosynchronous orbit'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this