Adaptive secondary mirror for the 6.5-m MMT

T. K. Barrett, D. G. Bruns, T. J. Brinkley, D. G. Sandler, B. C. FitzPatrick, J. R P Angel, T. Rhoadarmer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

4 Scopus citations


We report the latest progress on the design, fabrication and testing of the adaptive secondary mirror to be used in the adaptive optics system to for the 6.5m upgrade to the Steward Observatory's MMT. The adaptive secondary will use electromagnetic force actuators in conjunction with a rigid reference structure to deform a thin and flexible glass facesheet. The facesheet is fabricated with figure accuracy comparable to the surface of a traditional static secondary mirror. The flexible facesheet can however, be deformed by the actuators to conjugate the changing atmospheric aberration. Capacitive position sensors are placed at each actuator and are used to rapidly measure the position of the glass facesheet relative to the rigid reference structure. These measurements are used as feedback in a servo control-loop which maintains the desired figure of the adaptive secondary facesheet. In the proposed design the mechanical interface between the facesheet and the reference structure is limited to a small hub in the center of the facesheet. Due to heat dissipation in the electromagnetic voice-coils a temperature control system is required to maintain the facesheet of the adaptive secondary near the ambient temperature of the atmosphere. We report on laboratory tests of a nearly full size 60 actuator adaptive secondary prototype. We include tests of actuator stroke and position accuracy, control-loop stability, and closed-loop bandwidth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 1998
EventProceedings of the 1998 Conference on Adaptive Optical System Technologies. Part 2 (of 2) - Kona, HI, USA
Duration: Mar 23 1998Mar 26 1998


OtherProceedings of the 1998 Conference on Adaptive Optical System Technologies. Part 2 (of 2)
CityKona, HI, USA


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials

Cite this

Barrett, T. K., Bruns, D. G., Brinkley, T. J., Sandler, D. G., FitzPatrick, B. C., Angel, J. R. P., & Rhoadarmer, T. (1998). Adaptive secondary mirror for the 6.5-m MMT. In Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering (2 ed., Vol. 3353, pp. 754-763). SPIE.