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Next-Generation Deformable Mirrors for Astronomical Coronagraphy by Utilizing PMN-PT Single Crystal Stack Actuators in integration with Driver ASIC, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

This SBIR Phase I project aims to develop a new manufacturing approach for deformable mirrors (DMs) by batch fabricating the stack actuator array. The innovation leverages on our experience in developing stack actuator DM system with integrated ASIC driver electronics, enabling the next-generation DM-ASIC systems that are featured with: electro-mechanical performance exceeding traditional piezoelectric DMs by about 5 times, reduced number of wires from thousands to several tens, reduction of the power dissipation by two (2) orders of magnitude, shrinking of the form factor (weight/size) of the DM driver electronics by up to two (2) orders of magnitude, and reducing the DM cost by about 5 times. With both DM and the driver ASIC scalable by mosaicking to 96x96, 128x128 or larger format, the innovation holds promise of filling the NASA Technology Gap on DM and associating driver electronics connectors/cables as listed in the recently released Exoplanet Exploration Program Technology Plan Appendix 2017. More »

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