AAS 201st Meeting, January, 2003
Session 82. Planning for Future Missions: Radio to X-Ray
Poster, Wednesday, January 8, 2003, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall AB

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[82.06] Microshutter arrays for JWST - programmable field masks.

S.H. Moseley, K.A. Blumenstock (NASA's GSFC), A. Ewin (NASA/GSFC), D.E. Franz (RITSS/GSFC/NASA), J. Hein (NASA's GSFC), R. Hu (RITSS/NASA/GSFC), C. Kotecki (NASA's GSFC), A.S. Kutyrev (SSAI/GSFC/NASA), J. Laughlin, M.J. Li (NASA's GSFC), B. Lynch (RITSS/NASA/GSFC), A. Miles, D.B. Mott (NASA's GSFC), D.A. Rapchun (GST/GSFC/NASA), D.S. Schwinger, R. Silverberg (NASA's GSFC), W. Smith (OSC/NASA/GSFC), R.P. Wesenberg (NASA's GSFC), C. Zincke (QSS/NASA/GSFC), Y. Zheng (QSS/GSFC/NASA)

Two-dimensional microshutter arrays are being developed at NASA Goddard Space Flight Center for the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST, formerly NGST) for use as a programmable aperture mask for object selection for the Near Infrared Multiobject Spectrograph (NIRSpec). We employ a hybrid actuation and addressing of the shutters. The shutters are actuated magnetically and then held open and addressed electrostatically.

A tripole magnet for microshutter actuation has been designed and recently fabricated. Our first tests of the magnet demonstrated that the magnetic field is stronger compared to previously used bipolar magnets. As a result, the actuation was possible at larger distances from the microshutter array. The transport stage for for 512x256 shutter array has been designed and built. It is going to be used for cryogenic tests of the 512x256 arrays, including actuation, addressing and electronics operation, as well as optical testing.

We continue our study of the effects of the shutter structure on the optical performance of the spectrometer. Issues of the diffraction, vignetting and sampling are considered. The efforts are directed toward finding the optimal slit size and observing strategy that would maximize the instrument performance over its whole spectral range.

We are in the process of fabricating 2D addressable 128x128 shutter arrays (100

microns pitch). These arrays will be first fully functional large format 2D addressable microshutter arrays. It is an important step on the way to full size 512x256 arrays. We plan to have fully qualified demonstration devices by the end of 2003.

This project is supported by JWST.

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