Tinsley Opens Optics Manufacturing Plant
Tinsley Laboratories Inc. has opened a 30,000-sq-ft facility in Richmond, Calif., to precisely grind and polish mirror segments for NASA's James Webb Space Telescope. Enabling the company to process up to 12 mirrors simultaneously, the plant will house computer-controlled optical surfacing machines and an optical test facility to control ambient temperature to 0.25 °F. Tinsley expects to complete the polishing of optical surfaces for the telescope's 18 mirror segments in about 2 1/2 years.
The company is part of a mirror manufacturing team led by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp. of Boulder, Colo. Los Angeles-based Northrop Grumman Corp. is the prime contractor.