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Deep Impact Mission Science Technology Mission Results Gallery Education Discovery Zone Your Community Press Gallery - Images

Telescopes-ThermoVac

Telescopes-ThermoVac
Hi-Res JPEG (157 KB)

Tom Yarnell, a mechanical engineer at Ball Aerospace Corp. in Boulder, CO mounts the telescope for the Medium Resolution Instrument (MRI) next to the larger telescope of the High Resolution Instrument (HRI) in an 8' diameter vacuum chamber called Rambo. He leaves the chamber before it is pumped to an atmospheric pressure of 1/100 millionth of Earth's atmospheric pressure at sea level and a chilling -200 C (-330 F) simulating conditions in space. These tests are necessary to understand the performance of the instruments when they image the impactor spacecraft excavating a crater in Comet Tempel 1 on July 4, 2005 to study the comet's interior.

CREDIT: Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp.

 

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