Prasanth Sakhamuri, Managing Director, HHV.
Contract involves the manufacture and installation of a dedicated mirror coating plant for PRL’s upcoming 2.5-meter telescope
The Bangalore based Hind High Vacuum Co. Pvt. Ltd. (HHV), global leaders in vacuum and thin film technology, has bagged a contract from Physical Research Laboratory (PRL), a unit of Department of Space, for the manufacture and installation of a dedicated mirror coating plant for PRL’s upcoming 2.5-meter telescope. This telescope is a part of the Mount Abu Observatory which is in Rajasthan at an altitude of about 5,600 feet above mean sea level.
The mirrors of the telescopes are amongst the most important components for sensing radiations from distant sources. These need to be coated with a reflective thin film that aids efficient light collection. The reflective coatings are prone to environmental degradation which necessitates a re-coating. The existing coatings are stripped clean, and a fresh coating is then applied. These coatings are applied by vacuum deposition process to obtain the best properties in terms of reflectivity and durability. As the mirrors are sensitive, and one of the most expensive components in the telescope assembly, the coatings are carried out on-site. Thus, a vacuum coater is stationed on-site astronomical observatories for coating of the mirror at regular intervals.
“Astronomical telescopic mirrors coaters require a technologically advanced high vacuum equipment design, engineering, and manufacturing. HHV has been globally recognized as a trusted supplier for coaters for telescopic mirrors and has commissioned and demonstrated its coaters at various locations including demanding high altitudes going up to about 14,800 feet.” said Prasanth Sakhamuri, Managing Director, HHV.
HHV is currently executing an order from Physical Research Laboratory (PRL), Udaipur for the build of a mirror coater for handling mirrors of different sizes going up to a maximum of 700 mm diameter. Known as the cradle of Space Sciences in India, PRL which was founded in 1947 by Dr. Vikram Sarabhai, carries out fundamental research in selected areas of Physics, Space & Atmospheric Sciences, Astronomy, Astrophysics & Solar Physics, and Planetary & Geo-Sciences.