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The invention includes a deformable mirror for use in adaptive and active optical systems and in optical technology laser communication directed energy systems. The invention utilizes pockets formed in the back of the mirrors substrate. The pockets house actuators that are bonded to the substrate and may adjustably deform the mirror surface depending on the voltage supplied to the actuators. A plurality of mirrors may be combined to form a scalable array or positioned to overcome issues related to the uncontrollable portions of separate individual mirrors.