Aerospace & Defence

Hyperbolic mirrors for deep space observation

22nd August 2019
Alex Lynn

Optical Surfaces has developed a hyperbolic mirror for deep space observation. A hyperbolic mirror is the optical component of choice for precisely and accurately focusing light in a telescope from one focal point to the other focal point. Hyperbolic mirrors are used in a telescope design to correct certain distortions caused by an extremely fast f-ratio design.

A hyperbolic secondary mirror is used in Cassegrain telescopes to correct the spherical aberration caused by shorter focal length (smaller f/ratio) of the parabolic primary. In addition, in some more extreme low f/ratio (~f/3) applications served by Ritchey-Chretien telescopes, both primary and secondary are hyperbolic. For large deep space research telescopes, hyperbolic mirrors that correct fast optics are almost always necessary.

Optical Surfaces skilled craftsmen are able to draw upon a stable production environment to produce hyperbolic mirrors up to 500mm diameter with typical wave front error of lambda/20 P-V, surface finish of 10/5 and microroughness less than 1.2nm RMS.

These hyperbolic mirrors can be supplied mounted or mounted and with a coating exactly optimised for your application. In space borne telescope platforms, where weight is an issue, Optical Surfaces can produce hyperbolic mirrors with light-weighting options.

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