AAS 207th Meeting, 8-12 January 2006
Session 23 Future Space Missions
Poster, Monday, 9:20am-7:00pm, January 9, 2006, Exhibit Hall

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[23.01] Large Optics and In-Space Capabilities: Meeting Astronomical Needs

D. F. Lester (University of Texas), D. Ebbets (Ball Aerospace and Technology Corp.), J. Green (University of Colorado), C. Lillie (Northrop Grumman Corp.), R. V. Moe (NASA Goddard Space Flight Center)

We survey recent efforts to apply prospects of future in-space operational capabilities to the deployment, construction, and servicing of large astronomical optical systems in space. These studies are mapped onto recently released ESAS implementation plans, and considered in the light of more far-reaching future goals of the Exploration initiative. We consider the leveraging potential of Exploration tools to space astronomy. Following year-long studies by the science and engineering community, several NASA Vision Missions which addressed in-space efforts are considered in this regard. The potential of the lunar surface for astronomical installations, once considered highly enabling, is reevaluated briefly compared to opportunities in free-space

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