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Michelson Interferometer for Global High-Resolution Thermospheric Imaging (MIGHTI): Monolithic Interferometer Design and Test

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Abstract

The design and laboratory tests of the interferometers for the Michelson Interferometer for Global High-resolution Thermospheric Imaging (MIGHTI) instrument which measures thermospheric wind and temperature for the NASA-sponsored Ionospheric Connection (ICON) Explorer mission are described. The monolithic interferometers use the Doppler Asymmetric Spatial Heterodyne (DASH) Spectroscopy technique for wind measurements and a multi-element photometer approach to measure thermospheric temperatures. The DASH technique and overall optical design of the MIGHTI instrument are described in an overview followed by details on the design, element fabrication, assembly, laboratory tests and thermal control of the interferometers that are the heart of MIGHTI.

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Acknowledgements

The authors would like to acknowledge the following individuals:

MIGHTI Team: Rebecca Baugh, Glenn Weigle, Eloise Stump, Warren Tolson, Miles Newman, Steve Tanner;

ICON Team: Thomas Immel;

Bach Research (gratings): Eric Bach;

JenOptik Inc. (non-interferometer optics): Jay Kumler, Dan Sykora;

St. Cloud State University (AFM grating measurements): Russel Lidberg;

Space Systems Research Corp (Grating modeling): John Seely;

ICON is supported by NASA’s Explorers Program through contracts NNG12FA45C and NNG12FA42I.

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Correspondence to John M. Harlander.

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The Ionospheric Connection Explorer (ICON) mission

Edited by Doug Rowland and Thomas J. Immel

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Harlander, J.M., Englert, C.R., Brown, C.M. et al. Michelson Interferometer for Global High-Resolution Thermospheric Imaging (MIGHTI): Monolithic Interferometer Design and Test. Space Sci Rev 212, 601–613 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11214-017-0374-4

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