Gran Telescopio Canarias - M3 Tower
Gran Telescopio Canarias
The GTC telescope is a Spanish telescope with a segmented primary mirror of 10 m installed in the Canaries Islands (La Palma). The M3 tower is used to hold the M3 unit in cantilever at 45°and is fixed in the centre of the M1 mirror cell. The M3 mirror must be movable to point either on one of the 2 Nasmyth directions or to one of the 4 folded Cassegrain foci. The M3 mirror must also be removed from the central field to allow light going through the telescope Cassegrain focus. All these functions must be included inside the M3 tower.
The M3 tower includes a steel structure of about 4 m height and less than 2 m diameter supporting the rotation bearing and its motorization but also the 2 motorized linear guide tables allowing to remove the M3 unit form the central field. This part provides also the connection with the M1 cell. The upper part is a lightweight aluminium structure (< 100 kg) of about 3m height used as a baffle for the M3 mirror. The repeatability of the positioning in rotation on Nasmyth or Folded Cassegrain foci is better than 15 rad. The repeatability of the locking of the M3 unit at 45° is better than 7 rad in tilt and 10 m in axial position.
Customer: Gran Telesccopio Canarias (10m) – SPAIN
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