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Re: Need Info On Fibercomposite Mirrors

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Posted by Rick Crockett/">Rick Crockett on February 2, 2000 18:00:27 UTC

Hi Steve:

I like that word need. As you may know CMA has a NASA web site. They have been given a ton of your tax dollar but are calling their development a trade secret. Complain to your congressnam I guess. The Nature of the beast is to cure astigmatic. CMA's answer is to use a warping harness. I started experimenting around with resins 26 years ago and while I can produce an non-astigmatic replicate, as far as it goes it only remains a curiosity. This is especially so for atmosphere soaked instruments where there is a constant temperature in flux. As I have a bid out on non-photo/visual product using my "perfected" (I say with a grin) technique I can't reveal it. Even if I could, with the extremely high CoE and the probabilty of rapid aging I could not recommend it. If you feel you have a commercial application, and funding, I might be available but remeber that even amateurs are barely happy with plate glass. What is a couple of pounds for a small scope? when you get into a larger scope the stabilty is more critical and yet harder for a composite to maintain. On a large scope the wind loading is more critical than the weight and that is even in an observatory. Now a composite telescope in a solar sheltered lunar environment might be a consideration and would mean big bucks, in which case feel free to give me a ring..;o).

Clear Skies, -Rick

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