Refracting Telescope

by telescope review guide

Part two in my series on buying a telescope

In part one, I discussed why aperture is important in choosing a good telescope and also about telescope power. As I continue my series, I will discuss the refracting telescope. Be sure to check back for part 3 on reflecting telescopes!

The refracting telescope

Refracting telescope are the most common form of the telescope – a long tube where light passes directly from the front objective lens directly to the eyepiece at the opposite end of the tube.

Advantages
ᄋ Easy to use  due to the simplicity of design.
ᄋ Good for distant terrestrial viewing
ᄋ Excellent for lunar, planetary and binary stargazing especially with larger apertures
ᄋ Sealed tube protects optics and reduces image degrading air currents
ᄋ Rugged, need little or no maintenance

Disadvantages
ᄋ Generally have small apertures, typically 3 to 5 inches
ᄋ Less suited for viewing small and faint deep sky objects such as distant galaxies and nebulae
ᄋ Heavier, longer and bulkier than equivalent aperture reflectors and catadioptrics
ᄋ Limited practical usefulness
ᄋ Good-quality refractors cost more per inch of aperture than any other kind of telescope.

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