Riyan MaruMrs Nefdt Space Science26 January 2018Similarities and Differences of Refracting and Reflecting TelescopesThe Reflecting telescope was invented by the great British scientist Sir Isaac Newton in 1668.
Newton’s idea of building telescopes using mirrors instead of lenses was not new. The magnifying effect of concave mirrors had been put to practical use as reading aids by medieval monks centuries before. Newton was an inventor as well as an innovator. Niccolo Zucchi, was the first man to attempt to build a reflecting telescope, this was in 1616. After years, Newton used Zucchi’s ideas to create his own version of the reflecting telescope.
In 1609, Galileo Galilei, invented his version of a refracting telescope after spectacle makers in Netherlands created a previous version of the refracting telescope a year before Galileo. The refracting and reflecting telescopes have played a vital role in new discoveries in our solar system. They both have similarities and differences, and both have advantages and disadvantages when in use. On one hand, This is how a basic refracting telescope works: The objective lens job is to gather the light coming from the distant object, such as a star.
It then bends the light into a single point of focus. The eyepiece job is to enlarge the focused image for our eye to see. It acts like a magnifying glass. It’s basically a high technologically advanced magnifying glass used to look at planets and star in our solar system. On the other hand, a reflecting telescope uses two mirrors instead of two lenses.
Newton built this telescope to defeat chromatic aberration. Light from an object enters the tube of the telescope and is reflected of a curved mirror at the end of the tube. Then the second mirror reflects the image into the eyepiece. There are some negative aspects to this telescope as lots of light is lost during reflection of the image. In addition, the mirror may not be perfectly curved, this will result to the image not coming to a perfect point.
This would look like a dragged image for the viewer.The distinction between the two telescopes is in how they manipulate the incoming light in order to magnify the image. The main component in a reflecting telescope is a mirror where the light will bounce off and is then focused into a smaller area. In contrast, a refracting telescope uses lenses that focus the light as it travels towards the other end. Refracting telescopes gained popularity in the early days as they were far easier to create as technology was nowhere near as developed as today. Refracting telescopes needed way less resources to create that reflecting telescopes. This meant that the expenditure was way less. As technology has improved, reflecting telescopes are far more popular as it is easier to get the mirrors angles more accurately and this would make the image look crystal clear.
Adding to this, Reflecting telescopes gained popularity as it became more expensive and difficult to create large, refracting telescopes. It was easy for the reflecting telescopes to be created as large as possible the mirrors could be made in smaller segments which are then put together to perform one large mirror. Mirrors can also be made relatively cheap making it more feasible to build large arrays. One significant difference in the use of these two telescopes is that, the reflecting telescope is used more for astrology, and the refracting telescope is used for photography and landscapes viewing. This is because I reflecting telescope can see much farther and clearer that a refracting telescope.Works Cited”The Difference Between Reflectors and Refractors.” Universe Today, 4 May 2017, www.
universetoday.com/14436/the-difference-between-reflectors-and-refractors/.Joan, Ben. “Difference Between.” Difference Between Similar Terms and Objects, 30 Sept. 2011, www.differencebetween.net/technology/difference-between-reflecting-and-refracting-telescopes/.”Space Book.” Refracting Telescopes | Las Cumbres Observatory, lco.global/spacebook/refracting-telescopes/.