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Staying aligned when measuring gravitational waves: design, realisation and test of the ELISA IFPM active mirror mechanism

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Author: Witvoet, G. · Human, J.D.
Type:article
Date:2015
Publisher: Dutch Society for Precision Engineering DSPE
Place: Eindhoven
Source:Mikroniek, 5
Identifier: 530015
Keywords: Electronics · High Tech Systems & Materials · Industrial Innovation · Nano Technology · OM - Opto-Mechatronics · TS - Technical Sciences

Abstract

An active mirror mechanism to correct for seasonal alignment errors of the evolved Laser Interferometer Space Antenna (eLISA), a future ESA space mission meant to accurately detect gravitational waves, has been designed, realised and tested by TNO. The mechanism is supposed to move ±2.5° in a whole year with extreme accuracy. The design utilises Haberland hinges and piezostepper actuators, and yields satisfactory frequency-domain open-loop performance. A closed-loop controller design based on the measured dynamics complies with the requirement of just 5 nrad/VHz of jitter on the mirror angle.