Here's how the James Webb Space Telescope is aligning its mirrors in deep space
Here's how it works.
Webb's mirror control system only moves one actuator at at time to reduce the complexity of the system electronics, and also to ensure safety (in that a single maneuver is easier to monitor than several.) These actuators are tiny motors that allow the team to move the individual mirror segments.
Another major factor that Webb has to contend with is heat, as the telescope needs to be ultra-cool to perform its observations in the infrared."To limit the amount of heat put into Webb’s very cold mirrors from the actuator motors, each actuator can only be operated for a short period at a time," Perrin said."Thus, those big 12.5-millimeter moves for each segment are split up into many, many short moves that happen one actuator at a time."Read more: SPACE.com »
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James Webb begins careful, slow process of aligning mirrors | Digital TrendsWith deployment complete, the James Webb Space Telescope team is now embarking on their next challenge: Aligning the telescope's mirror segments.
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