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Air Force Maui Optical Station (AMOS)

amoslogo.gif - 6.9 K

The Air Force Maui Optical Station (AMOS), an asset of the US Air Force Materiel Command's Phillips Laboratory, is located at the summit of Haleakala, on the island of Maui, in the state of Hawaii. It is part of the Maui Space Surveillance Site (MSSS),

The mission of AMOS is to conduct research and development of new and evolving electro-optical sensors, as well as to provide support for operational missions defined by US and AF Space Command. In addition, AMOS provides experiment support to a wide variety of military and civilian organizations in diverse fields. This support has included the Strategic Defense Initiative Organization (SDIO), the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), and many universities. AMOS has hosted and supported a wide variety of visiting experiments.

Typical AMOS visiting experiments include:

amos.jpg - 38.5 K AMOS telescopes include a 1.6 meter telescope, an 80 centimeter Beam/Director Tracker, and a 60 centimeter Laser Beam Director. MOTIF includes twin 1.2 meter telescopes on a common mount. GEODSS includes two main 1 meter telescopes and an auxiliary 40 centimeter telescope. A major upgrade to AMOS will be the Advanced Electro-Optical System (AEOS), a 3.67 meter telescope scheduled for first light in 1997. AEOS will have seven coude' rooms for various experiments, as well as conventional Cassegrain positions located on the mount itself.

Sensors associated with these telescopes include a wide range of detectors and imaging arrays sensitive to the visible and infrared wavelengths. The 1.6 meter telescope has a Compensated Imaging System which has been operational since 1982. The new AEOS will also incorporate an adaptive optics system for atmospheric turbulence compensation. Under development is the AMOS Daytime Optical Near Infrared Imaging System (ADONIS), capable of extending the AMOS imaging capabilities to 24 hours per day. These adaptive optics systems allow AMOS to take photographs of orbiting satellites with outstanding clarity, in spite of the severe problems of dealing with atmospheric turbulence.

Lasers currently available at the site for external propagation include Argon ion lasers, a Neodymium YAG, and a ruby laser. External laser safety is accommodated with the use of plane watch personnel in conjunction with guidelines from the local FAA facility. Predictive avoidance is coordinated with the Laser Clearinghouse to preclude inadvertent illumination of satellites.

In addition to these facilities, the University of New Mexico manages the Phillips Laboratory's Maui High Performance Computing Center (MHPCC). The MHPCC is a state-of-the-art computing center using massively parallel processing computers, based on the IBM SPx series. The MHPCC supports both Department of Defense and civilian users, operating in both classified and unclassified modes. AMOS utilizes the MHPCC for a significant amount of its image processing.


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Implemented by Charles P. Vick, Sara D. Berman, and
Christina Lindborg, 1997 Scoville Fellow
Maintained by Steven Aftergood
Updated February 26, 2003