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The Manufacturing and Testing of the W.M. Keck Observatory Primary Mirror Segments at Itek Optical Systems

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The manufacturing and testing of the segments for the W.M. Keck Observatory Primary Mirror is a coordinated effort in balancing production manufacturing with state of the art large mirror fabrication. The basic concept of production manufacturing is to reduce the manufacturing steps to their fundamentals by putting the quality into the machinery and fixturing allowing as little recurring manhour input as possible. The state of the art large mirror fabrication, on the other hand, usually involves the minimum in machinery and tooling as possible and using as much human skill input as necessary. The manufacturing and testing conducted at Itek is the result of the compromises that ensues when drawing that fine line between two very broad concepts.

© 1992 Optical Society of America

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