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21 September 2012 Gaia basic angle monitoring system
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The Gaia mission will create an extraordinarily precise three-dimensional map of more than one billion stars in our Galaxy. The Gaia spacecraft, built by EADS Astrium, is part of ESA's Cosmic Vision programme and scheduled for launch in 2013. Gaia measures the position, distance and motion of stars with an accuracy of 24 micro-arcsec using two telescopes at a fixed mutual angle of 106.5°, named the ‘Basic Angle’. This accuracy requires ultra-high stability, which can only be achieved by using Silicon Carbide for both the optical bench and the telescopes. TNO has developed, built and space qualified the Silicon carbide Basic Angle Monitoring (BAM) on-board metrology system for this mission. The BAM measures the relative motion of Gaia’s telescopes with accuracies in the range of 0.5 micro-arcsec. This is achieved by a system of two laser interferometers able to measure Optical Path Differences (OPD) as small as 1.5 picometer rms. Following a general introduction to the Gaia mission, the Payload Module (PLM) and the use of Silicon Carbide as base material, this presentation will address an overview of the challenges towards the key requirements, design, integration and testing (including space-level qualification) of the Gaia BAM.
© (2012) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
W. Gielesen, D. de Bruijn, T. van den Dool, F. Kamphues, E. Meijer, B. Calvel, A. Laborie, D. Monteiro, C. Coatantiec, S. Touzeau, M. Erdmann, and P. Gare "Gaia basic angle monitoring system", Proc. SPIE 8442, Space Telescopes and Instrumentation 2012: Optical, Infrared, and Millimeter Wave, 84421R (21 September 2012);


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