Abstract

A 15-cm Ritchey–Chretien telescope with diamond-turned metallic mirrors has been developed for use in the cryogenically cooled infrared space mission, Infrared Telescope in Space (IRTS). The IRTS is designed to register infrared emission from 1 μm to 1 mm with a relatively wide beam (8′ to 30′ depending on the wavelength). It will be operated at superfluid helium temperatures (~1.8 K). We tested the performance of the telescope system both at room temperature (~300 K) and at near-liquid-nitrogen temperature (~100 K) to investigate the effects of the support stress and the temperature on the telescope. The results indicated that the Hartmann constant stays within the design goal (~1′) even in the worst case. The origin of aberrations is examined and possible improvements for future application are discussed.

© 1994 Optical Society of America

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