Abstract

An adjustable bipod flexure (ABF) technique for a large-aperture mirror of a space camera is presented. The proposed flexure mount can decrease the surface distortions caused by the machining error and the assembly error of the mirror assembly (MA) in a horizontal optical testing layout. Through the analysis of the compliance matrix of conventional bipod flexure, the positional relationship between the rotation center and the apex of the flexure is investigated. Then, the principle of the adjustable flexure, known as the trapezoidal switching principle, is proposed based on the analysis result. The structure and application of the flexure are also described. The optical performance of the mirror mounted by the adjustable flexures in different misalignments was performed using finite element methods. The result shows that the astigmatic aberration due to gravity is effectively reduced by adjusting the mount, and the root-mean-square value of the mirror can be minimized with the misalignment between the flexure pivot and the neutral plane minimized. New monolithic bipod flexures, based on the optimal regulating variable Δu according to the measurement results, are manufactured to replace the ABFs to secure the mirror’s safety against launch loads. Modal analysis verified the mechanical safety of the MA with respect to the new monolithic flexures.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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