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Signature for TMT Deformable Mirrors - TMT signed a contract in May 2019 with the French engineering and construction company CILAS to build the TMT deformable mirrors. CILAS is a world leader in the design and production of custom-built deformable mirrors for Adaptive Optics systems. Pictured, from left to right: Mr David Goodman, TMT Business Manager and Mr Pierre Faucoup, CILAS CEO - Image credit: TMT International Observatory

TIO Signs Contract for the TMT Deformable Mirrors

Orléans (France), May 29, 2019 - CILAS will develop the two large deformable mirrors for the Thirty Meter Telescope (TMT).

  • CILAS, the pioneer in adaptive optics in France, was awarded a contract for the production of two large deformable mirrors (“DMs”) for TMT, one of the world’s most advanced optical/near-infrared telescopes when built.
  • This contract will produce the largest DMs ever fabricated with piezo-electric technology.

 

CILAS will manufacture the two DMs optically conjugated to the ground («DM 0», 3 125 actuators in a 63x63 array with ~5mm inter-actuator pitch) and to 11.8 km («DM 11», 4 548 actuators in a 76x76 array with ~5mm inter-actuator pitch).  The DMs will be integrated into the TMT first light, laser guide star, multi-conjugate adaptive optics system and used to correct wavefront deformations generated by atmospheric turbulence.

Located in Hawaii, TMT’s telescope observatory will enable discoveries in the fields of astronomy, astrophysics, and cosmology. TMT’s science agenda shall cover all space and time domains from nearby comets & asteroids to exoplanets, distant galaxies, and the very first sources of light in the universe. With a 30 meter primary mirror, TMT is at the vanguard of a new generation of large telescopes called «Extremely Large Telescopes» (“ELTs”).

This contract is the result of a long-standing collaboration between CILAS and TMT (started in 2004) to develop DM technology for very large telescopes. For this purpose, CILAS adapted and improved its SAM (Stack Array Mirror) technology, initially developed in the 1980’s to meet the needs of astronomers.

 

CILAS Deformable Mirror (DM) Prototype for TMT

CILAS Deformable Mirror (DM) Prototype for TMT. The computer controlled deformable mirrors of the first light TMT Adaptive Optics System counteract the image distortion produced by atmospheric turbulence - Image Credit: CILAS

 

TMT logo generated with the TMT DM Prototype during the tests at the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics of the National Research Council Canada.

TMT logo generated with the TMT DM Prototype during the tests at the Herzberg Astronomy and Astrophysics of the National Research Council Canada.

Image credit: TMT International Observatory / NRC-CNRC

This image demonstrates the excellent capability of CILAS' deformable mirror (DM) to control the wavefront of the light that will feed TMT instruments after correction by TMT’s Adaptive Optics system NFIRAOS. 


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