Designing the Mirrror

In this activity, students will use memory metal wire to create a model of a deployable structure.  The James Webb Space Telescope has several structures that must be deployed in space, including parts of the primary mirror.  Students must create and evaluate a design to enable the primary mirror to fold inside the payload fairing of the spacecraft.  

Curriculum links:

Design - develop and communicate design ideas using annotated sketches, detailed plans, 3-D and mathematical modelling, oral and digital presentations and computer-based tools

Evaluate - investigate new and emerging technologies

Technical knowledge - understand and use the properties of materials and the performance of structural elements to achieve functioning solutions

- understand how more advanced mechanical systems used in their products enable changes in movement and force

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