SENER, 50 Years in Space and Ambitious Projects Such As the E-ELT Telescope
Last week in Barcelona, the SENER international engineering and technology group with Catalan headquarters in the Barcelona Synchrotron Park (BSP) celebrated its 50th year working in space with a great conference about exoplanets by IEEC (Catalan Institute of Space Sciences) director Prof. Ignasi Ribas.

This celebration provided an opportunity to remind the different space projects SENER was involved in during the last 50 years: about 300 devices and subsystems in different satellites and space vehicles for agencies from the US (NASA), Europe (ESA), Japan (JAXA) and Russia (Roscosmos). Among the more recent projects, some famous missions can be mentioned: Rosetta (2004), Herschel & Planck (2009), Curiosity (2011), Gaia (2013), LISA Pathfinder (2015) or ExoMars 2020.

Regarding SENER future projects, the ESO (European Southern Observatory) European Extremely Large Telescope was highlighted during the conference. By the way, the E-ELT will be the largest optical/infrared telescope ever built with a complex 5 mirrors system… of 39-meter aperture!

In this project, a SENER’s team from the Barcelona Synchrotron Park will design and build the cells of the secondary and tertiary mirrors (M2 and M3) as well as the corresponding control systems and auxiliary equipment that will insure that these large but flexible mirrors keep their shape and maintain their correct position in the telescope.

Mirror 2 (4.2 meters diameter, 3.5 tons) and Mirror 3 (3.8 meters diameter, 3.2 tons) have to be delivered by the end of 2018 and by mid-2019, respectively.


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