Abstract

The accurate co-alignment of the transmitter to the receiver of the BepiColombo Laser Altimeter is a challenging task for which an original alignment concept had to be developed. We present here the design, construction and testing of a large collimator facility built to fulfill the tight alignment requirements. We describe in detail the solution found to attenuate the high energy of the instrument laser transmitter by an original beam splitting pentaprism group. We list the different steps of the calibration of the alignment facility and estimate the errors made at each of these steps. We finally prove that the current facility is ready for the alignment of the flight instrument. Its angular accuracy is 23 μrad.

©2012 Optical Society of America

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