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Newtonian Telescope Guide

A Newtonian telescope, also known as a Newtonian reflector, is a type of reflecting telescope invented by Sir Isaac Newton in the 17th century. It uses a concave primary mirror to gather light and reflect it onto a flat secondary mirror, which in turn reflects the light out the side of the telescope and into an eyepiece.

One of the advantages of Newtonian telescopes is that they offer a large aperture for their cost and size, making them a popular choice for amateur astronomers. They also do not suffer from chromatic aberration, which can be a problem with refracting telescopes that use lenses instead of mirrors.

However, Newtonian telescopes can suffer from coma, which causes stars near the edge of the field of view to appear distorted. This can be corrected by using a coma corrector or by using eyepieces with longer focal lengths.

Another disadvantage of Newtonian telescopes is that they require regular maintenance, particularly of the mirrors. The primary mirror may need to be realigned periodically, and both mirrors may need to be cleaned to maintain their reflective properties.

Overall, Newtonian telescopes are a good choice for those looking for an affordable and high-quality telescope for observing deep-sky objects like galaxies, nebulae, and star clusters. They can offer excellent performance for their cost and are relatively easy to maintain.


Visit our Space & Telescope FAQs page for more fun & interesting facts.

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