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The polymer First Contact has been used for the last ten years on optics ranging from delicate coatings of gold, silver and aluminum to substrates that vary from Zerodur to Borosilicate to Pyrex, plus many more.

For telescope use the primary mirror does not need to be removed from it's mirror cell in order to clean it with First Contact. This eliminates the expense and risk associated with taking out the primary mirror for transport to a coating facility. Plus the telescope system stays collimated. All of these factors mean First Contact greatly reduces lost telescope time, in a great number of ways. In fact First Contact can be used during the day or non-use hours so that no telescope time is lost at all.

First Contact has been used hundreds of times on an individual optic. There is no constraint as to the number of times First Contact can be used on a given surface.

First Contact is a non-toxic, inert polymer systems that is designed to remove dust, fingerprints, residues and other contamination from delicate, sensitive, and precision surfaces without scratching or damaging them in any way. It leaves the optic prestinely clean and gives new life (nearly original reflectivity numbers) to the optic as well. No other product offers these benefits.

"I agree with your comments on First Contact..... saving re-coats by using First Contact would be a great cost-saver. For us the main issue would probably be access to a coating chamber at or
near our site(s)."

Project Scientist for multi-million dollar,

worldwide telescope project: 11/29/06

If one considers the great cost and risk of shipping the optics out for recoating and the fact that First Contact can be used over and over again, year after year, it can save thousands or tens of thousands of dollars in long term costs. Extending out the life of a given original coating saves both time and money. It also prevents a loss of telescope time that is associated with each need for re-coating. On larger projects this single factor alone can cost hundreds to thousands of dollars per night lost and in some cases per hour lost.

A variant of First Contact will soon be available specifically designed to clean CCD chips and/or hard to reach CCD windows/cover slips.

First Contact has been used on products ranging from small, inexpensive surfaces to the Hope Diamond and Keck segments (hexagon 6' across). In January of 2007 it was at Keck for a second trip. Later in 2007 First Contact will be used to clean a 4m primary mirror.

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pricing, availability and specifications subject to change without notice