Essay about Telescopes in Astronomy

2790 Words Jul 12th, 2015 12 Pages
Telescopes in Astronomy

Jennifer Boyer


June 12, 2015
Robert Austin

Telescopes in Astronomy

What people currently know about the universe, along with all of its contents, is due in large part to the invention of telescopes. This paper discusses the science of sunlight and stars by explaining how the telescope has changed people’s view of the universe, as well as their place in it. This essay also discusses the major designs of telescopes, provides a list of each design’s strengths and weaknesses, describes the best places to build ground-based telescopes and why astronomers choose those places, and contrasts the strengths and weaknesses between building telescopes on Earth, in orbit, or even on the moon.
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Telescopes enable astronomers to see and study far away objects by using different forms of light, along with its varying wavelengths, to analyze these objects and determine their size, location, composition, movement, and temperature (Bennett, J., Donahue, M., & Schneider, N., & Voit, M., 2015). Depending on the type of telescope, astronomers can learn different things about celestial objects (Bennett, J., Donahue, M., & Schneider, N., & Voit, M., 2015).
Major Designs of Telescope Telescopes capture light that are invisible to the naked eye (Bennett, J., Donahue, M., & Schneider, N., & Voit, M., 2015). This light tells astronomers much information about celestial objects. “Telescopes come in two basic designs: refracting and reflecting” (Bennett, J., Donahue, M., & Schneider, N., & Voit, M., 2015, p. 122). All telescopes collect light and focus it with either a lens or a curved mirror. Another design of the telescope is the catadioptric telescope. “Catadioptric telescopes use a combination of mirrors and lenses to fold the optics and form an image” (Sharma, 2015, Catadioptric Telescope, para. 1). Both refracting and reflecting telescopes have their strengths and weaknesses.
Refracting Telescopes A refracting telescope “uses lenses to focus light” (Bennett, J., Donahue, M., & Schneider, N., & Voit, M., 2015, p. G-11). “A refracting

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