From the present state-of-the-art it will take an 8 order-of-magnitude improvement in materials stability to achieve future picometer requirements. This project is the point of departure for ultra-stable mirror support structures made using first-generation zero CTE HoneySiC (circa 2014), and 2nd generation Hierarchical Hybrid Ceramic Matrix Nano-composite (H2CMN, circa 2016). These extremely promising engineered ceramic matrix composite materials will replace the status quo, moisture-absorbing, organic matrix composites used in the present state-of-the-art composites, as well as to directly replace beryllium. 1st and 2nd generation HoneySiC will provide the low areal cost, low areal density, low cost and ultra-stability that is required for future EUV, UV/O and Far-IR mission telescopes.
Low cost, lightweight, dimensionally stable HoneySiC material has use in complex telescopes for Astronomy, Imaging and Remote Sensing applications, including optical instruments/telescopes which enable imaging, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions for police and paramilitary units, fire fighters, power and pipeline monitoring, search and rescue, atmospheric and ocean monitoring, imagery and mapping for resource management, and disaster relief and communications. The dual-use nature of complex telescopes will bring affordability to national defense missions as well.