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A 4-m evolvable space telescope configured for NASA's HabEx Mission: the initial stage of LUVOIR

Lillie, Charles F. and MacEwen, Howard A. and Polidan, Ronald S. and Breckinridge, James B. (2017) A 4-m evolvable space telescope configured for NASA's HabEx Mission: the initial stage of LUVOIR. In: UV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes and Instruments: Innovative Technologies and Concepts VIII. Proceedings of SPIE. No.10398. Society of Photo-optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE) , Bellingham, WA, Art. no. 103980R. ISBN 9781510612532.

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Previous papers have described our concept for a large telescope that would be assembled in space in several stages (in different configurations) over a period of fifteen to 20 years. Spreading the telescope development, launch and operations cost over 20 years would minimize the impact on NASA’s annual budget and drastically shorten the time between program start and “first light” for this space observatory. The first Stage of this Evolvable Space Telescope (EST) would consist of an instrument module located at the prime focus of three 4-meter hexagonal mirrors arranged in a semi-circle to form one-half of a 12-m segmented mirror. After several years three additional 4-m mirrors would be added to create a 12-m filled aperture. Later, twelve more 4-m mirrors will be added to this Stage 2 telescope to create a 20-m filled aperture space telescope. At each stage the telescope would have an unparalleled capability for UVOIR observations, and the results of these observations will guide the evolution of the telescope and its instruments. In this paper we describe our design concept for an initial configuration of our Evolvable Space Telescope that can meet the requirements of the 4-m version of the HabEx spacecraft currently under consideration by NASA’s Habitable Exoplanet Science and Technology Definition Team. This “Stage Zero” configuration will have only one 4-m mirror segment with the same 30-m focal length and a prime focus coronagraph with normal incidence optics to minimize polarization effects. After assembly and checkout in cis-lunar space, the telescope would transfer to a Sun-Earth L2 halo orbit and obtain high sensitivity, high resolution, high contrast UVOIR observations that address the scientific objectives of the Habitable-Exoplanet Imaging Missions.

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Breckinridge, James B.0000-0002-9488-098X
Additional Information:© 2017 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Our Evolvable Space Telescope (EST) study was initiated by Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems in Redondo Beach, California and funded with Internal Research and Development (IRAD) funds from March 2014 through January 20016. Since that date the authors have continued to refine the EST concept using funding from their personal owned organizations. We thank John Mather, Marc Postman, Harley Thronson, Gary Mathews, Mark Clampin, Lee Feinberg, Jeremy Kasdin, Tony Hull, and my others for useful discussions during this study.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Northrop Grumman CorporationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:Space telescope, coronagraph, exoplanets, on-orbit assembly, servicing, infrastructure, robotics
Series Name:Proceedings of SPIE
Issue or Number:10398
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180718-154558929
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Official Citation:Charles F. Lillie, Howard A. MacEwen, Ronald S. Polidan, James B. Breckinridge, "A 4-m evolvable space telescope configured for NASA's HabEx Mission: the initial stage of LUVOIR", Proc. SPIE 10398, UV/Optical/IR Space Telescopes and Instruments: Innovative Technologies and Concepts VIII, 103980R (5 September 2017); doi: 10.1117/12.2274623;
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:87978
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:18 Jul 2018 23:10
Last Modified:03 Oct 2019 20:01

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