OSA's Digital Library

Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 16, Iss. 25 — Dec. 8, 2008
  • pp: 20249–20257

Obscura telescope with a MEMS micromirror array for space observation of transient luminous phenomena or fast-moving objects

J. H. Park, G. K. Garipov, J. A. Jeon, B. A. Khrenov, J. E. Kim, M. Kim, Y. K. Kim, C. -H. Lee, J. Lee, G. W. Na, S. Nam, I. H. Park, and Y. -S. Park  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 16, Issue 25, pp. 20249-20257 (2008)

View Full Text Article

Enhanced HTML    Acrobat PDF (907 KB)

Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Browse by Journal and Year


Lookup Conference Papers

Close Browse Journals / Lookup Meetings

Article Tools



We introduce a novel telescope consisting of a pinhole-like camera with rotatable MEMS micromirrors substituting for pinholes. The design is ideal for observations of transient luminous phenomena or fast-moving objects, such as upper atmospheric lightning and bright gamma ray bursts. The advantage of the MEMS “obscura telescope” over conventional cameras is that it is capable both of searching for events over a wide field of view, and fast zooming to allow detailed investigation of the structure of events. It is also able to track the triggering object to investigate its space–time development, and to center the interesting portion of the image on the photodetector array. We present the proposed system and the test results for the MEMS obscura telescope which has a field of view of 11.3°, sixteen times zoom-in and tracking within 1 ms.

© 2008 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(040.1490) Detectors : Cameras
(110.2970) Imaging systems : Image detection systems
(110.6770) Imaging systems : Telescopes
(230.3990) Optical devices : Micro-optical devices
(120.6085) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Space instrumentation

ToC Category:
Imaging Systems

Original Manuscript: September 3, 2008
Revised Manuscript: November 7, 2008
Manuscript Accepted: November 18, 2008
Published: November 24, 2008

J. H. Park, G. K. Garipov, J. A. Jeon, B. A. Khrenov, J. E. Kim, M. Kim, Y. K. Kim, C.-H. Lee, J. Lee, G. W. Na, S. Nam, I. H. Park, and Y.–S. Park, "Obscura telescope with a MEMS micromirror array for space observation of transient luminous phenomena or fast-moving objects," Opt. Express 16, 20249-20257 (2008)

Sort:  Author  |  Year  |  Journal  |  Reset  


  1. D. Band, J. Matteson, L. Ford, B. Schaefer, D. Palmer, B. Teegarden, T. Cline, M. Briggs, W. Paciesas, G. Pendleton, G. Fishman, C. Kouveliotou, C. Meegan, R. Wilson, and P. Lestrade, "BATSE observations of gamma-ray burst spectra. I - Spectral diversity," Astrophys. J. 413, 281-292 (1993). [CrossRef]
  2. P. W. A. Roming et al., "The swift ultra-violet/optical telescope," Space Sci. Rev. 120, 95-142 (2005) [CrossRef]
  3. V. P. Pasko, "Electric jets," Nature 423, 927-929 (2003). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  4. Y. Yair, C. Price, Z. Levin, J. Joseph, P. Israelevitch, A. Devir, M. Moalem, B. Ziv, and M. Asfur, "Sprite observations from the space shuttle during the Mediterranean Israeli dust experiment (MEIDEX)," J. Atmos. Terr. Phys. 65, 635-642 (2003). [CrossRef]
  5. H. T. Su, R. R. Hsu, A. B. Chen, Y. C. Wang, W. S. Hsiao, W. C. Lai, L. C. Lee, M. Sato, and H. Fukunishi, "Gigantic jets between a thundercloud and the ionosphere," Nature 423, 974-976 (2003) [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  6. I. H. Park, G. K. Garipov, and B. A. Khrenov, "Tracking mirror for measurements of extreme energy cosmic rays from space," Proc. 28th ICRC Cosmic Ray Conf. (Tsukuba) HE1.5, 1109-1112 (2003).
  7. I. H. Park, "MEMS based space telescope for extreme energy cosmic rays experiments," Nucl. Phys. B - Proc. Suppl. 134, 196-201 (2004). [CrossRef]
  8. P. F. Kessel, L. J. Hornbeck, R. E. Meier, and M. R. Douglass, "A mems-based projection display," Proc. IEEE 86, 1687-1704 (1998). [CrossRef]
  9. D. Hah, C. A. Choi, C. K. Kim, and C. H. Jun, "A self-aligned vertical comb-drive actuator on an SOI wafer for a 2D scanning micro mirror," J. Micromech. Microeng. 14, 1148-1156 (2004). [CrossRef]
  10. Y. Hishinuma and E. H. Yang, "Piezoelectric unimorph micro actuator arrays for single-crystal silicon continuous-membrane deformable mirror," J. Microelectromech. Syst. 15, 370-379 (2006). [CrossRef]
  11. I. W. Jung, U. Krishnamoorthy, and O. Solgaard, "High fill-factor two-axis gimbaled tip-tilt-piston micromirror array actuated by self-aligned vertical electrostatic comb drives," J. Microelectromech. Syst. 15, 563-571 (2006). [CrossRef]
  12. J. Kim, D. Christensen, and L. Lin, "Monolithic 2-D scanning mirror using self-aligned angular vertical comb drives,"IEEE Photon. Tech. Lett. 17, 2307-2309 (2005). [CrossRef]
  13. P. J. Rodrigo, I. R. Perch-Nielsen, and J. Glückstad, "High-speed phase modulation using the RPC method with a digital micromirror-array device," Opt. Express 14, 5588-5593 (2006). [CrossRef] [PubMed]
  14. D. Dayton, J. Gonglewski, S. Restaino, J. Martin, J. Phillips, M. Hartman, S. Browne, P. Kervin, J. Snodgass, N. Heimann, M. Shilko, R. Pohle, B. Carrion, C. Smith, and D. Thiel, "Demonstration of new technology MEMS and liquid crystal adaptive optics on bright astronomical objects and satellites," Opt. Express 10, 1508-1519 (2002). [PubMed]
  15. G. K. Garipov and B. A. Khrenov, "Camera obscura for observation of EAS images in Cherenkov light," J. Phys. G: Nucl. Part. Phys. 20, 1981-1988 (1994). [CrossRef]

Cited By

Alert me when this paper is cited

OSA is able to provide readers links to articles that cite this paper by participating in CrossRef's Cited-By Linking service. CrossRef includes content from more than 3000 publishers and societies. In addition to listing OSA journal articles that cite this paper, citing articles from other participating publishers will also be listed.

« Previous Article  |  Next Article »

OSA is a member of CrossRef.

CrossCheck Deposited