UNSW Orders Aperture Optical Sciences Telescopes

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CANBERRA, New South Wales, Sept. 10, 2018 — The University of New South Wales (UNSW) Canberra Space, a research team located at the Australian Defence Force Academy (ADFA), has ordered multiple CC series telescopes from Aperture Optical Sciences Inc. (AOS).

These telescopes provide the primary optical payload for the M2 mission and support its role in developing world-class space capability in Australia. The M2 mission is part of an R&D program supported by the Royal Australian Air Force that consists of a constellation of two advanced 6U Cubesats. The spacecraft have a suite of optical and radio frequency remote sensing payloads to carry out a broad range of technology demonstration roles.

The novel approach to onboard data processing on the spacecraft aims to reduce the timeline between image acquisition and the ultimate delivery of information to decision makers.

“One of the primary goals of M2 is to develop a high-performance small spacecraft with imaging capability,” said professor Russell Boyce, director of UNSW Canberra Space. “We explored multiple options for the optical payload and found that the silicon carbide telescopes from AOS provide us with the optimal combination of programmatic agility, coupled with low mass, thermal stability, and imaging quality. We’re impressed with their in-house capabilities for both design and manufacture of customized silicon carbide optical payloads.” 

The CC series is a new generation of high-performance telescopes for Cubesat and small satellite imaging and laser communication applications. Extensive use of silicon carbide provides a telescope that is inherently athermal and low mass, providing consistent image quality and lowering launch costs.

“UNSW Canberra Space is a world-class team of space professionals playing a leading role in shaping Australia’s capabilities in space,” said Chip Ragan, vice president of space programs at AOS. “Their selection of the CC series SiC telescope for the M2 project’s primary optical payload further demonstrates our capabilities to provide high-performing optical payloads for demanding small satellite applications.”

UNSW Canberra Space is an institution in space research, education, and thinking in Australia, with the capability to routinely conceptualize, develop, and fly affordable, agile in-orbit missions.

Published: September 2018
BusinessUniversity of New South WalesUNSWCanberra SpaceAustralian Defence Force AcademyADFACC SeriestelescopesAperture Optical SciencesAOSEuropeEuro News

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