LARGE-TELESCOPE ALIGNMENT UTILIZING OPTICAL TOOLING TECHNIQUES
ENVIRONMENTAL RESEARCH INST OF MICHIGAN ANN ARBOR
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The report describes the alignment of a large astronomical telescope by the use of optical tooling techniques which are primarily based on the use of a standard-focusing aligning telescope, flat mirrors, and autocollimating procedures inside a closed dome. Because of ease of interpretation, this technique requires much less time than other alignment procedures. The only stellar observations are those required to obtain residual pointing errors, which are correctable by the indoor techniques described. The optical tooling method was successfully used to align the 60-in. Mount Haleakala astronomical telescope. On autocollimation, tilt alignment of a 60-in.-diameter mirror can be read to 3 arcsec or 0.0009 in. across the diameter. This is more precise than the capability of most mirror support systems. The techniques were also successfully applied to the two 48-in. telescopes at the Mount Haleakala Observatory.