Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Lab tests completed: AdSec-DX is good to go!

The AdSec-DX unit passed all its lab tests with flying colors and is now in the clean room tent on the integration stand awaiting its reintegration with the hub. An amazing achievement by an amazing team of people from Arcetri, LBTO, UofA, and MicroGate!

The last step of the lab tests followed the integration of a mylar patch over the mouse hole (a feature of the thin shell #4), which can be seen on the before and after pictures below before and after the patch was applied.

 Before... the mouse hole is just above the inner hole of the shell. 
Through the hole, one can see the reference and a couple of actuator holes under the shell.

 After... The hole is patched

Testing included static setting of the shell, dynamic elevation slew testing (zenith to 70 degrees off zenith), thermal testing at zenith and 70 degrees off zenith and testing of thin shell rotation while setting at various elevation angles. The results of all tests were favorable and the DX AdSec is now ready for integration with the telescope.

The unit will be reintegrated on its hub in the middle of August and is scheduled to be back on the telescope around Aug 21 for a lot of day time work before seeing the sky after the shutdown and restart of the telescope, sometime in mid-September. Stay tuned...

In case you wonder what this mouse hole is about... TS4 developed a couple of fractures following an incident during the edging of the inner hole. These cracks were quickly stopped through drilling and then a circular hole (the mouse hole) was ground to remove the damaged area. Six years later, a patch was finally designed and installed to cover the mouse hole!

  The mouse hole as seen right after the aluminizing of the thin shell (April 2013)

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