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Precision In-Space Manufacturing for Structurally-Connected Space Interferometry
Phone: (419) 271-0602
Phone: (415) 378-8340
Made In Space, Inc. (MIS) proposes the construction of large baseline structures, 15 meters or greater, for infrared space interferometry missions by autonomous in-space manufacturing and assembly. This enables the deployment of large primary trusses unconstrained by launch load or volume restrictions that meet science requirements for the high angular resolutions (less than 0.3 arcseconds) necessary to detect planets near bright stars and measure individual objects in star clusters. In this Phase I effort, MIS investigates the mass, performance, and mission planning benefits of in-space manufacturing for structurally-connected interferometers (SCI).
MIS is the leading developer of manufacturing technologies in the space environment. Utilizing technologies derived from Archinaut, a NASA Tipping Point 2015 award winner, large infrastructure can be manufactured on orbit and enable a multitude of missions. Optimast is a self-contained, scalable machine for producing microgravity-optimized linear structures on-orbit, developed as a product application of the Archinaut technologies. MIS has developed Optimast to a TRL-6 with successful thermal vacuum testing of extended structure manufacturing in 2017.
Adapting the MIS Optimast technology to produce long baseline structures with low thermal expansion materials enables simultaneous structural fabrication and positioning of the optical subsystems to the required absolute (static) and dynamic (thermal deflection and oscillation) tolerances. An Optimast-SCI baseline structure thus provides superior absolute position control over traditional deployable structures at much lower cost, mass, and integration complexity and eliminates the parasitic mass from hinge mechanisms and traverse rails.
* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *