Abstract

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) Backplane Stability Test Article (BSTA) was developed to demonstrate large precision cryogenic structures’ technology readiness for use in the JWST. The thermal stability of the BSTA was measured at cryogenic temperatures at the Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC) X-Ray Calibration Facility (XRCF) and included nearly continuous measurements over a six-week period in the summer of 2006 covering the temperature range from ambient down to 30Kusing a spatially phase-shifted digital speckle pattern interferometer (SPS-DSPI). The BSTA is a full size, one-sixth section of the JWST primary mirror backplane assembly (PMBA). The BSTA, measuring almost 3m across, contains most of the prominent structural elements of the backplane and is to our knowledge the largest structure ever measured with SPS-DSPI at cryogenic conditions. The SPS-DSPI measured rigid body motion and deformations of BSTA to nanometer-level accuracy. The SPS-DSPI was developed specifically for the purposes of this test and other tests of large cryogenic structures for JWST.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

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