It’s shopping time!

While we are approaching the MAIT phase (standing for Manufacturing, Assembly, Integration, Test) it is time to shop to fully implement the optical test tower. What to buy?

Shopping list

  • An interferometer
  • Optical elements for the facility: parabolic mirror and flat reference emirror, plus smaller replica to be used as simulators.
  • Temperature and vibration probes: a lot!
  • Motion control devices, to allow moving and monitoring the items in the test tower.
  • Absolute phase sensor kit, or “SPL”: 6 pack.
  • Camera and action cam: for documentation and also for blogging!!!
  • Temperature and vibration probes: already inserted in the list, better repeat.
  • Fans, to mix the air and prevent static air bubbles.

Where to buy? Who can sell you a 1.5 meter diameter parabolic mirror??


Every item in the list is labeled with some “requirements”, i.e. features and specifications to be met so that the item can be integrated and used in the tower. Why? Safety and durability, for instance, but that’s easy to be understood. So let’s go into details. The preliminary study for any project is composed by analyses (computations) largely involving assumptions. “Let’s suppose that this works like that”. “Let’s suppose that the themperature over ther is that…”. Such assumptions are useful to create a robust context, and build on fixed points. Then, they are translated into requirements, which in turn are allocated to devices, operating conditions, procedures. Then, when each and every part in our setup fullfills these requirements, we are confident that our analyses will still be valid; we may be confident that the results will be as expected.