Project : coprin
Section: Contracts and Grants with Industry
Alcatel Space Industries, ESA
We have started at the end of 2002 a collaboration with Alcatel for the optimal design of a space-based observation telescope. The objectives of this study are to develop an instrument with a low inertia (to reduce the energy necessary for orienting the instrument and to allow fast orientation changes) while being deployable and to allow an active accurate control of the secondary mirror location.
In 2002/2003 we have proposed an innovative structure and we have completed a first optimal design study for a prototype. We have then been chosen by Alcatel as a sub-contractant for an ESA contract for the development of a small scale prototype. The Technical University of Braunschweig was chosen to provide a key component for this prototype. Unexpected difficulties with this component has delayed the tests of this prototype although some deployment test have succeeded. This mechanical difficulties have imposed important changes in the mechanical design (with the same optimal arrangement for the structure) and preliminary test will take place at the beginning of 2005. Alcatel has signed another contract with COPRIN for determining the optimal geometry of the measurement system (based on laser interferometers) that will be used to locate precisely the secondary mirror of the telescope.