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    • Open up the sky to images and capabilities previously unavailable to the cost-conscious amateur.

      The first major type of telescope that has remained popular for hundreds of years is the refracting telescope but there was also a limit to how powerful these could be because the telescopes required bigger and bigger lenses in order to get more powerful. It was hard to make larger lens of high quality because it became more difficult as the lens size became larger in size. This was because of the tiny imperfections in the glass along with "lens sagging" that was caused by the force of gravity on the lens. The first practical reflecting telescope was built in 1688 by Issac Newton with the intention of solving the problems with the refractive telescopes.

      Who are you buying a telescope for? The main thing that you need to consider when researching what is the best telescope for the money, is how serious you are about astronomy. If you are buying a telescope for yourself, then our advice is please DON'T buy the cheapest telescope you can find. If you want to have a long-time hobby then buying a cheap telescope may disappoint you to the point of losing interest in astronomy quickly. In our experience, the best telescope for the money is the telescope that gives you or your kids years of satisfaction.

      The second type of telescope is the Reflector. Made by Sir Isaac Newton, this telescope functions by focusing the light back at the front of the tube, which is where the eyepiece sits, by using parabolic mirrors and another smaller mirror to deflect the light. There is no added color in the image caused by refraction of light since this telescope does not use lenses. These are the cheapest of all telescopes and are more portable than refractors.

      To get the most out of astronomy, you will want to make sure you invest in the right scientific instrument; after all, telescopes are scientific instruments, whether used professionally or as a hobby.

      It is a good idea to check the optics, such as in a reflector, check the mirror. Any damages here will mean that the telescope is as good as smaller telescopes. This makes buying new a better option than buying a big telescope with damage to the optics - unless you are willing to invest in getting them repaired, and then new seems like a better idea.

      A good rule of thumb is that any telescope under $100 is not worth buying. I have seen quite a few, and have had my own experiences. Toy store telescopes are not the way to go, unless the telescope is for a child.

      The Space Age presented astronomers with opportunities never before open to them. In 1990, NASA launched the Hubble Space Telescope into orbit, the world's first space-based telescope. Images obtained from outside the Earth's atmosphere are clearer than those captured beneath it because the atmosphere is constantly moving and shifting. This movement causes blurring referred to as "seeing," but this blurring is not present in Hubble photographs due to it being beyond the Earth's atmosphere. The Hubble will be replaced by the newer, more modern James Webb Space Telescope that will have enhanced visual and infrared viewing capabilities.

      Its portability and ease of use make the scope perfect for beginner or intermediate observers, while providing experts with a sophisticated field tool.

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