latest news

Custom refractors

We now offer custom built refractors with world class optics from APM in Germany. For more info please mail to: info@jtwastronomy.com

Instrumentation specialist

Thanks to the acquisition of new, large machinery we are optimising our facility towards making custom instrumentation - large telescopes, mounts, optics, etc. For more info please mail to: info@jtwastronomy.com

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Engineering Services

Engineering

At JTW Astronomy we have a wide range of skills available directly or through our partners and are fully equipped to complete entire projects from concept to end product entirely in house. Areas we can help include -

  • Concept feasibility testing
  • Concept modelling
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Electronic Engineering
  • Optical Engineering
  • Software Engineering
  • Prototyping
  • Iterative Design (Testing, Analysis & Refining)
  • Low volume, batch and mass production
  • Selection of external processes (surface treatments, etc)

Design and Engineering

We offer a full design and engineering service. From an initial concept or existing product we can troubleshoot the design and help with material selection, correct tolerancing, standardising, optimisation for production, and so forth. We use the latest in CAD technology and can deliver industry standard models and drawings that are checked with Finite Element Analysis.

Spot diagrams of a new telescope from our in house optical engineering.
Optical engineering of an astrograph.

As a manufacturer we are particularly well placed to optimise your products for production. Often we can greatly reduce costs by optimisation for the real world. Production is of great importance and by optimising the design for common production methods, tooling and eliminating difficult features we can greatly reduce costs without compromise to the end product.

Finite element analysis of instrumentation weight on a bespoke heavy duty focuser.
Finite element analysis of lateral loads on an automated telescope pier.

Virtual and Real Prototyping

Once a design has been completed the next step is to make a prototype. This is typically expensive. Using the latest in CADCAM technology that we have customised based on our own production experiences (tool life, cycle times, difficulty, etc), we can run simulations to see just how long the production will take. Together with cost of materials, tooling, machine time, finishing, etc, it's then possible to predict unit pricing with reasonable accuracy. We use integrated pricing software for this task, design-time pricing is not as accurate as with a finished product but it is a useful indication.


Bespoke cooling controller, designed in-house & manufactured in Europe.
Production ready 3D model of one of our own astrographs.

Once a CAM file exists from the design it is then possible to perform an iterative process where the 3D model of the product can be adjusted and refined to reduce production costs and increase efficiency and profits. Once the design is optimised for production it's essential to make a small production series to confirm the machining simulations, to provide a physical prototype for testing and also for accurate price calculations. This is often an iterative process, with improvements to the product.

Concept drawing of a hybrid carburettor designed for a local client.

Production

We have extensive in-house production capacity. With 320 machine hours per week as standard capacity, for critical projects this can be pushed to 680 hours per week. Thanks to extensive industrial experience we are perfectly suited to producing unusual, difficult or low volume products. Our tooling is optimised for this task and our machinists are highly skilled and classically trained rather than merely operators.

We offer -

  • CNC Milling
  • CNC Turning
  • CNC Grinding
  • Conventional Milling
  • Conventional Turning
  • Conventional Grinding
  • MIG/TIG and electrode welding (coded and non-coded)
  • Fabrication
  • Non-destructive testing & destructive testing
  • Additive manufacturing (3D printing)
  • Mold making and investment casting
  • Finishing & Surface treatments

CNC milling of precision aluminium parts.
Welding a difficult 1.5mm thick aluminium tube.

Testing and Certification

For critical applications we can use standard methods of testing. Non destructive, such as dye penetrant (DPI) or magnetic particle inspection (MPI). We also work closely with inspection agencies for more specialised testing, such as ultrasound. We can also perform destructive testing with custom build machines to test durability, life span, failure modes, etc.

For critical applications we can also get the end product inspected by a 3rd party inspection bureau, certified to ISO 9001.


(Turnkey) Delivery

The last step of the cycle is of course delivery of the finished design/models/component(s)/subassembly/product. Even at this point our service will continue as any future alterations or evolution of the product will be supported by us.

Bespoke cooled camera for wildlife monitoring.

Make initial contact

For further information please email to: info@jtwastronomy.com for a no-obligations chat.