A Caltech Library Service

Innovative telescope architectures for future large space observatories

Polidan, Ronald S. and Breckinridge, James B. and Lillie, Charles F. and MacEwen, Howard A. and Flannery, Martin R. and Dailey, Dean R. (2016) Innovative telescope architectures for future large space observatories. Journal of Astronomical Telescopes, Instruments, and Systems, 2 (4). Art. No. 041211. ISSN 2329-4124. doi:10.1117/1.JATIS.2.4.041211.

[img] PDF - Published Version
See Usage Policy.


Use this Persistent URL to link to this item:


Over the past few years, we have developed a concept for an evolvable space telescope (EST) that is assembled on orbit in three stages, growing from a 4×12-m telescope in Stage 1, to a 12-m filled aperture in Stage 2, and then to a 20-m filled aperture in Stage 3. Stage 1 is launched as a fully functional telescope and begins gathering science data immediately after checkout on orbit. This observatory is then periodically augmented in space with additional mirror segments, structures, and newer instruments to evolve the telescope over the years to a 20-m space telescope. We discuss the EST architecture, the motivation for this approach, and the benefits it provides over current approaches to building and maintaining large space observatories.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Breckinridge, James B.0000-0002-9488-098X
Additional Information:© 2016 Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Paper 16007SSP received Feb. 3, 2016; accepted for publication Jul. 22, 2016; published online Aug. 17, 2016. The authors would like to acknowledge strong support and internal funding from Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems and very helpful comments, suggestions, and criticisms from a variety of people, including Jonathan Arenberg, Suzanne Casement, Alberto Conti, Marc Postman, Ken Sembach, Wes Traub, and Harley Thronson.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Northrop Grumman CorporationUNSPECIFIED
Subject Keywords:space telescopes; innovative architectures; segmented telescopes; in-space assembly and servicing
Issue or Number:4
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20180718-155119352
Persistent URL:
Official Citation:Ronald S. Polidan, James B. Breckinridge, Charles F. Lillie, Howard A. MacEwen, Martin R. Flannery, Dean R. Dailey, "Innovative telescope architectures for future large space observatories," Journal of Astronomical Telescopes, Instruments, and Systems 2(4), 041211 (17 August 2016).
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:87979
Deposited By: George Porter
Deposited On:18 Jul 2018 23:13
Last Modified:16 Nov 2021 00:22

Repository Staff Only: item control page