Active optics systems

The dynamic behavior of the telescope and its optical performance during observation time are astronomers' primary concerns. With these active optics systems, Safran Electronics & Defense, through its subsidiary Safran Reosc, offers comprehensive active optics systems comprising the mirror, the support structure, the electronics and the image quality sensor.

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Comprehensive, high-performance systems for guaranteed optical quality


Safran Reosc, thanks to its unique expertise, is able to offer very high performance active optics systems. These include a thin, lightweight mirror and support structure equipped with precisely calibrated actuators. Proximity electronics connect the components of the setup and if necessary, an image quality sensor evaluates the quality of the data produced at the telescope's focal point. Safran Reosc's unique expertise in precision optics, large mechanical assemblies, and pointing and coupling devices results in guaranteed system performance.

This technical expertise led to Safran creating the active optics system of the Very Large Telescope (VLT), whose 8-meter M1 mirror is controlled by 150 actuators. In partnership with MT Mechatronics, Safran Reosc also conducted a preliminary study for an active M2 mirror concept for the European Extremely Large Telescope (E-ELT). With its 6.5 meter diameter, it will sit on around a hundred actuators.


Safran Reosc offers comprehensive, high-performance active optics systems:

  • thin & lightweight mirror
  • support structure equipped with precisely-calibrated actuators
  • proximity electronics to connect the components
  • image quality sensor to measure the quality of the data produced at the telescope's focal point
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