Detail View: Dryden Image Gallery: NASA Reinstalls Main Mirror in SOFIA Airborne Observatory

Title: 
NASA Reinstalls Main Mirror in SOFIA Airborne Observatory
Creator: 
NASA
Description: 
October 8, 2008 Engineers and technicians from NASA, the German Space Agency and the Deutsches SOFIA Institut recently reinstalled the German-built primary mirror assembly into NASA's Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy, or SOFIA, airborne observatory. Technicians removed the glass mirror from the modified 747SP observatory in April 2008 and transported it to NASA's Ames Research Center, Moffett Field, Calif., where it received its reflective aluminum coating in a vacuum chamber in June 2008. The coating, five one-millionths of an inch thick, will be reapplied as necessary during the 20-year life of the program. "We had completed system tests of our mirror coater but this is the first time we've actually coated SOFIA's mirror. The team and equipment performed flawlessly and the results are magnificent," says Ed Austin, SOFIA science project manager at Ames. The mirror assembly was transported back to NASA's Dryden Aircraft Operations Facility in Palmdale, Calif., mid-September and reinstalled Oct. 8. › Read News Release 08-50 Photo Description: A technician guides SOFIA's primary mirror assembly into the aircraft's telescope cavity completing the mirror reinstallation following its initial coating. NASA Photo / Carla Thomas ED08-0262-54
Date: 
10/17/08
Identifier: 
283623main_ED08-0262-54_full
MediaType: 
Image
Year: 
2008
Where: 
Sofia
Where: 
Ames Research Center (ARC)