Defense Tech Briefs | April 1, 2010
Deformable Mirrors Key to Advancement of Space Imaging Research
Boston Micromachines has been selected by NASA's Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) Program to integrate its MEMS-based deformable mirrors (DMs) into two Phase 1 space imaging research projects. For the first project, the company will collaborate with Boston University to develop a compact, ultra-low-power, high-voltage multiplexed driver suitable for integration with DMs in space-based wavefront control applications. This project will yield a driver that produces a minimum hundred-fold reduction in power consumption and a ten-fold reduction in size, but still maintains high precision and decreases cost interconnection complexity.
The second project aims to innovate an enhanced fabrication development process for high-actuator-count DMs that are required for wavefront control in space-based, high-contrast imaging instruments. The manufacturing process will overcome current scalability issues associated with fabricated, polysilicon surface-micromachined MEMS (microelectro-mechanical system) DMs. By expanding the size of DMs, space imaging instruments will be able to shape more light using less hardware and fewer stages