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Session 60 - Next Generation Space Telescope.
Oral session, Tuesday, January 14
In collaboration with NASA GSFC, we have examined a wide range of potential concepts for a large, passively cooled space telescope. Our design goals were to achieve a theoretical imaging sensitivity in the near-IR of 1 nJy and an angular resolution at 1 micron of 0.06 arcsec. Concepts examined included a telescope/spacecraft system with a 6-m diameter monolithic primary mirror, a variety of telescope/spacecraft systems with deployable primary mirror segments to achieve an 8-m diameter aperture, and a 12-element sparse aperture phased array telescope. Trade studies indicate that all three concept categories can achieve the required sensitivity and resolution, but that considerable technology development is required to bring any of the concepts to fruition. One attractive option is the system with the 6-m diameter monolithic primary. This option achieves high sensitivity without telescope deployments and includes a stiff structure for robust attitude and figure control. This system capitalizes on coming advances in launch vehicle and shroud technology, which should enable launch of large, monolithic payloads into orbit positions where background noise due to zodiacal dust is low. Our large space telescope study was performed by a consortium of organizations and individuals including: Domenick Tenerelli et al. (Lockheed Martin Corp.), Roger Angel et al. (U. Ariz.), Tom Casey et al. (Eastman Kodak Co.), Jim Gunn (Princeton), Shel Kulick (Composite Optics, Inc.), Jim Westphal (CIT), Johnny Batache et al. (Harris Corp.), Costas Cassapakis et al. (L'Garde, Inc.), Dave Sandler et al. (ThermoTrex Corp.), David Miller et al. (MIT), Ephrahim Garcia et al. (Garman Systems Inc.), Mark Enright (New Focus Inc.), Chris Burrows (STScI), Roc Cutri (IPAC), and Art Bradley (Allied Signal Aerospace).
Program listing for Tuesday