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Boston Micromachines Awarded NASA Imaging Contract

Photonics.com
May 2013
CAMBRIDGE, Mass., May 23, 2013 — Boston Micromachines Corp. (BMC) has received a $500,000 contract from NASA to advance its MEMS-based deformable mirror (DM) technology for space-based imaging.

The grant is part of NASA’s ROSES (Research Opportunities in Space and Earth Sciences) Technology Development for Exoplanet Missions — a component of NASA’s solicitation on strategic astrophysics technology — which supports the agency’s goal to directly detect and characterize Earthlike planets around nearby stars and to search for signs of habitability and life.

DMs are used to correct residual aberrations that space telescope optics cannot address.

The award will enable BMC to demonstrate the mirror technology’s capacity to survive dynamic mechanical environmental stresses associated with launch and deployment in space. The components will be evaluated at BMC and at coronagraph test beds at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory and Princeton University.

“The weight and peak power consumption of our DMs are each less than one-tenth of a conventional system, and the cost is considerably lower. These advantages will help reduce the cost of future exoplanet missions,” said BMC President Paul Bierden. “We are pleased that NASA continues to support our mirror technology and its role as one of the key technologies for future flight hardware that supports exoplanet direct detection.”

For more information, visit: www.bostonmicromachines.com



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