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Center Innovation Fund: ARC CIF

Collapsible Space Telescope (CST) for Nanosatellite Imaging and Observation

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

This project furthers the development of innovative deployable aperture technologies meant for integration within 6U nanosatellites. Prior work developed the concept for a Collapsible Space Telescope. This work included a design of a deployment structure for a 152.4mm aperture f/8 RC telescope and the construction of a full-scale deployable truss tube prototype. This project will refine the telescope design to include computational ray tracing.

The ability to integrate a 15-20 cm telescope in a 6U nanosatellite demonstrates the applicability of nanosatellites for space science, operational, and exploration applications heretofore requiring larger platforms, showcase low-cost integrated optical technologies, develop a new cadre of space technologists, and demonstrate collaborative teaming with other government agencies, underserved communities, and industry. The ability to integrate a deployable Cassegrain telescope into a nanosatellite platform matches desires outlined within the Remote Sensing Instruments/Sensors Technical Area Roadmap and represents game changing technologies in small satellite subsystems to include the potential for swarm missions with distributed apertures. Additional Benefits include advancement of telescope, optics and nanosatellite capability, STEM/outreach, and commercial business development. Basic configuration for the deployable telescope has been established along with a concept design for the deployable telescope in previous studies. This study aims to further that effort on a path to enable integration within a 6U nanosatellite spacecraft by elevating the instrument's TRL from 2 to 4.

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Anticipated Benefits

Primary U.S. Work Locations and Key Partners

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Project Duration

Technology Maturity (TRL)

This is a historic project that was completed before the creation of TechPort on October 1, 2012. Available data has been included. This record may contain less data than currently active projects.

A final report document may be available for this project. If you would like to request it, please contact us.

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