Understand The Benefits Of Dream's Engineered Lightweight Mirrors

D r e a m


Dream's owner, Shane Santi, has been designing lightweight optical mirrors using FEM/FEA since 2003. He has more design and empirical use experience creating optimized lightweight glass mirrors than any other individual in the world. Dream is at the forefront of lightweight glass mirror technology because Dream understands that there should be just as much engineering in the geometry of the mirror as the mirror mount.

Because Dream produces the engineered, lightweight mirror blanks and mirrors in-house, this gives Dream control over as-designed versus as-cast variance, annealing, scheduling/delivery, and an ability to quickly modify a design from its archives.

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Dream has tackled the issues of lightweight mirrors head on. Instead of repeating the same, simple pattern that uses fairly large, unsupported face details, Dream designs from the mirror mount "up." This support up engineering method in and of itself is a huge design improvement over other lightweight mirrors.

The second main difference is that Dream has not been afraid to make the designs more complex in order to increase performance. This should not be surprising since Dream is an engineering company, which also produces full instruments, not just the mirror blank and/or finished mirror.

Through design & engineering Dream can reduce both print through from polishing and reduce gravity displacements that the mirror sees in final use. Although this added complexity adds to the front side of producing each mirror blank, it normally represents a 5% increase compared to the entire cycle. Dream believes this is well worth the added time and is one of the many aspects that makes Dream unique in the world.

An example of the added complexity in a Dream lightweight optical mirror is illustrated in a first generation 16" design. It has five different rib heights, five different rib thicknesses and a tapered rib feature as well. Dream's engineering occurs through detailed analysis, utilizing many design & FEM/FEA iterations. With design & engineering experience dating back to 2003 it allows Dream to rapidly mature even a new design that meet our customer's requirements.

Our second and third generation 16" mirrors have back flanges. This gives Dream yet another design feature to draw from. Back flanges can also be manipulated to shift the CG of the mirror, among other benefits.

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Look at Dream's designs to see the mechanical differences compared to all other lightweight optical mirrors. When the 3D design of the optic is optimized around an initial support architecture, then modified in thickness, height and sub rib locations using extensive FEM/FEA iterations (and cases), it gives Dream's lightweight, engineered mirrors superb performance that is unrivaled in the nearly 100 year history of lightweight mirrors.
Don't take our word for it. Look at hard data here , here and here. As shown on page 1 Dream's clients are now free to use lightweight mirror technology without the historical burden of MSF errors.

"We shall look back and see how inefficient, how primitive it was to work with thick, solid mirrors, obsolete mirror-curves, ..."
- George Willis Ritchey 1928
From the book "Mirror Mirror" by Mark Pendergrast

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Contact: shane @ dreamscopes.com

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