Douglas R. McCarter

Douglas R. McCarter

McCarter Technology, Inc., USA

Title: Space invader asteroids - Detect and Deter Geoscience meets Astroscience


Douglas R. McCarter has been an invited speaker for organizations such as MDA, NASA, SPIE, ESTO, COSPAR and NSMMS. After obtaining his certification as a Machinist and Millwright, he co-founded McCarter Machine Inc., dba McCarter Technology in 1981 with his wife Eloise. Douglas is an inventor of manufacturing processes using silicon and author and resulting owner of US Patent 6,443,817 “Method of finishing a Silicon Part”. He was awarded Lifetime Senior Member Status in the SPIE, Society of Professional Optical Society. He is recognized as World’s Expert on Precision Silicon Components by ESTO, European Optical Society. He was appointed three year term on editorial staff of International Optic Periodical named “Advanced Optical Technology” (Germany). Since 1998, he has authored eighteen technical papers that have been presented at SPIE conferences. He has been highlighted in periodicals such as Forbes, Kiplinger Letter, New Mexico Optics, NASA Tech Briefs and MDA Tech Briefs.


Current strategies for detecting and deflecting/destroying small to medium size asteroids approaching earth are in their infancy. Projects such as Sentinel for detection and DE-STAR for deflecting of asteroids are gaining momentum while others are in design stages. NASA has recently reinstated the Wide Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) using an aluminum Telescope to some success. In early 2014, asteroids near earth have only been detected 24 hrs. by JPL, which would make evacuation of a city not reasonable. One asteroid was videoed by a land telescope striking the moon with a flash of light visible enough for the human eye. Again this was recorded by chance and random monitoring but not predicted. To give a better warning alert, McCarter promotes the upgraded substitution from aluminum to use single crystal silicon (SC-Si) instead. For IR detection of asteroids, SC-Si lenses, prisms and filters are invaluable in the 1-5 µm range along with SC-Si mirrors at any wavelength. Using SC-Si Telescopes, SC-Si retroreflectors, and SC-Si High Energy Lasers a synchronized multiple satellite arrays can be established. In addition to jitter and blur free telescope operation the same material can be on board as a high energy laser to deter the direction. SC-Si with its unique set of mechanical and thermal properties is eminently suitable for deployment in all these applications. But the superior thermal properties are particularly suited for high energy applications. Exceptionally high thermal conductivity and diffusivity combined with relatively low thermal expansion enable SC-Si mirrors to handle the energy, often without active cooling, while maintaining figure. SC-Si components maintain focus throughout load and space conditions. The lessons learned from Infrared Geoscience shadow detection missions will accelerate this urgent need for Infrared Astroscience. This Accurate Positioning will provide Accurate Prediction, as we study the lurking shadows to detect and deter catastrophic collisions with the earth.

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