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M1M3: Out of Storage at Last

Tuesday, October 30, 2018

October 26, 2018 - A week after the Primary/Tertiary Mirror (M1M3) Cell was moved to the Richard F. Caris Mirror Lab on the University of Arizona campus, the M1M3 Mirror was also moved to the Mirror Lab from a hangar at Million Air, where it has been stored since its fabrication in 2015.

The Mirror left the hangar at Tucson International Airport on a specialized trailer from Precision Heavy Haul and arrived at the Mirror Lab at approximately 4:00 a.m. on October 18th. As with the M1M3 Cell move last week, the Mirror waited outside the Lab until the outside air temperature warmed to the accepted level, and then was moved inside the building. The designated LSST workspace inside the Mirror Lab now accommodates the Mirror, the Mirror Cell, and the Mirror lifting fixture, so some strategic rearranging was done to ensure the space was used as efficiently as possible.

Later the same day, the lid on the Mirror's protective shipping container was removed and the Mirror was revealed for the first time since being placed in storage. The next day, the Mirror's protective blue polymer coating, originally applied before it was stored, was refreshed with a new layer.

Now that both the Cell and the Mirror are in the Lab, the next step is the installation of the Mirror onto the M1M3 Cell using the vacuum lifter.

Financial support for Rubin Observatory comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Cooperative Agreement No. 1258333, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and private funding raised by the LSST Corporation. The NSF-funded Rubin Observatory Project Office for construction was established as an operating center under management of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).  The DOE-funded effort to build the Rubin Observatory LSST Camera (LSSTCam) is managed by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC).
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 to promote the progress of science. NSF supports basic research and people to create knowledge that transforms the future.
NSF and DOE will continue to support Rubin Observatory in its Operations phase. They will also provide support for scientific research with LSST data.   

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