A UV-Visible (UVIS) space telescope mission providing unprecedented views of the cosmos and alien worlds.
Building on Hubble's Legacy
The Hubble Space Telescope will leave a rich legacy of extraordinary science and compelling public engagement. ASTRO-1 will continue and enhance its ultraviolet and visible light observations using advanced instrumentation and techniques. The observation timelines for dynamic cosmic targets first resolved by Hubble can be extended years into the future, while deep maps of the Milky Way, nearby galaxies, and distant cosmological fields pioneered by Hubble can be extended over much larger areas of the sky.
The current baseline architecture for ASTRO-1 is a 1.8-meter diameter space telescope with a novel off-axis, unobscured design that delivers a wide field of view for its large digital camera. The off-axis design results in exquisitely round star images that lack the cross-shaped diffraction spikes commonly seen in astronomical images.
Such clean stellar images make it possible to block the light from a bright parent star using a coronagraphic instrument to search for orbiting planets and other surrounding debris. This will also help to observe subtle distortions in distant galaxy shapes caused by the gravity of intervening dark matter, which can help to calibrate data from other telescopes surveying signifcant fractions of the sky.
ASTRO-1 will have reflective coatings on its mirrors that will allow efficient imaging and spectroscopic observations of planets, stars, nebulae, and galaxies at ultraviolet wavelengths that can only be done from space. The telescope will be placed well above Hubble’s low-Earth orbit in order to maximize observing efficiency and stability. In such a high orbit it can be paired with an external occulting spacecraft (or starshade) to enable an additional method for directly observing planets around nearby stars.
We are dedicated to advancing the frontiers of space science and exploration.
Together we will create new levels of public access and engagement in scientific research from space. Support us as we all explore the universe, galaxies, and new solar systems - discoveries await!