Eric M. Trad

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics

First Advisor

Richard G. Cobb, PhD


Methodology for the design and fabrication of 5 inch diameter membrane-like mirror structures is explored, resulting in test articles with areal densities as low as 1.57 kg/m2 and a thickness of 1.5 mm. Each optical structure has 7 control patches etched into the PVDF layer, which can be used as actuators. These test articles are utilized to demonstrate the capabilities of an acquisition system to make measurements of static and dynamic actuation of the mirror surface. Static deformations are analyzed statistically and determined to yield maximum deformations in the actuated regions of -2.1 micro with a standard deviation of 0.33 micro when 400 volts are applied. The acquisition system was characterized for dynamic actuation of the surface and found to have a sample rate ranging from 4 to 14 Hz. This rate is found to be dependent upon the desired detail level of the surface description as calculated by the wavefront analysis software.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number