The reflective surface of the MAGIC telescope

M. Doro, D. Bastieri, A. Biland, F. Dazzi, L. Font, M. Garczarczyk, M. Ghigo, E. Giro, F. Goebel, R. Kosyra, E. Lorenz, M. Mariotti, R. Mirzoyan, L. Peruzzo, G. Pareschi, J. Zapatero

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The atmospheric Cherenkov telescope MAGIC for ground-based gamma-ray astronomy is operating since late 2003 on the Canary island of La Palma. Its 17 m diameter mirror is composed of 964 square all-aluminum mirrors of ∼ 0.5 m side, making up a parabola of 236 m2 area. Each mirror is composed of a sandwich of two thin aluminum layers interspaced by a honeycomb structure that ensures rigidity, high temperature conductivity and low weight. The surface of each raw blank is diamond milled to provide high reflectivity and a slightly different focal length to fit the overall parabolic shape of the reflector. We report about the stability and performance of the surface exposed to the atmosphere for over 3 years. For the construction of the clone of the first telescope, dubbed MAGIC II, major improvements of the design and performance of the reflective surface were required. Given the good experience with aluminum mirrors, a similar assembly was tested, but the area was increased to 1 m2, which allowed to skip the inter-alignment of four mirrors within a panel and to reduce substantially the weight. The increased rigidity of the mirror unit resulted in an improved focussing quality. In addition, a second class of mirrors will be installed in the outermost part of the reflector, namely glass mirrors obtained by cold-slumping replica technique. Details on the construction of both type MAGIC II new mirrors and the 17 m reflector will be presented. © 2008 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Aluminum mirrors
  • Gamma-astronomy
  • Glass mirrors
  • IACT
  • MAGIC

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