In September 2016, China unveiled the world’s largest telescope – an instrument engineered so finely it is 3 times more sensitive than Arecibo and may help in the international search for understanding more on the origin of the universe and the Big Bang. Sadly, since filming this video, FAST’s chief engineer and scientist, Professor Nan Rendong lost his fight with cancer. Not only was Professor Nan a talented and well-respected scientist who dedicated over 20 years to the FAST project, but we found him to be a kind, intelligent and dedicated man who took the time to explain his work and the importance of it to us. The Five-Hundred-Metre Aperture Spherical Telescope, known as FAST had been constructed over five years in a remote area of Guizhou province, south central China. It was built in a 45 million year old crater, unlikely to be affected by flooding and far from human interference. The 500m dish surpasses Arecibo radio telescope, built in Puerto Rico in 1963, as the world’s largest and is three times more sensitive in detecting radio waves thousands of light years away. FAST consists of 4450 individual panels and Chinese project engineers had to design a cable net of ten thousand cables to manipulate it to detect signals. FAST’s focus cabin is also unique thanks to a directional tracking system. A key mission for the telescope will be detecting pulsars, the matter that remains when a star eight times the size of the sun explodes. These pulsars rotate thousands of times per second and are the universe’s most accurate clock. Experience the construction and meet the creators of FAST: The World’s Largest Telescope.
Category Archives: Equipment
NASA’s Orion spacecraft launched successfully atop a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket Dec. 5 at 7:05 a.m. EST from Space Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Orion’s Exploration Flight Test-1 (EFT-1), is the first flight test for NASA’s new deep space capsule and is a critical step on NASA’s journey to Mars. The 4.5 hour flight is scheduled to conclude with the splashdown of Orion in the Pacific Ocean.
Star Walk 2 and Star Walk Kids are two apps that we know you’re going to love. In this tutorial video, David will demo both Apps and show off their in app purchase features. It’s a fantastic app that inspires creativity by allowing you (and your kids) to explore the universe like never before. If you only buy one Astronomy App, check out Star Walk 2.
New telescopes come with a couple different types of inexpensive finders – magnifying and non-magnifying ones. In this video, David Fuller of “Eyes on the Sky” takes the viewer through the various types of basic finders, highlighting the benefits and drawbacks of each so the viewer can make a better educated decision when purchasing a new telescope. Also covered is how to align a finderscope with the main telescope, with a visual demonstration of how it might look for the viewer.
Barlow lenses are an inexpensive – and often effective – way to increase the magnification and eyepiece collection of amateur astronomers. In this video, David Fuller of “Eyes on the Sky” takes the viewer through the various types, caveats and benefits with using them, as well as what to look for when shopping for one.
This video about the basics of telescopes discusses field of view, in particular, the difference between apparent field of view (AFOV) and telescopic field of view (TFOV). With an explanation of the math used to calculate these plus various examples of the calculations and visuals, the viewer can finish this video with a more complete understanding of this concept that is often confusing to beginning amateur astronomers who are new to telescopes.
Hosted by David Fuller of “Eyes on the Sky,” this video goes over the various sizes and types of basic eyepieces for many amateur telescopes. The three most common eyepiece barrel diameters are discussed, as well as the types of lens configurations which determine how well the eyepiece forms an image for the user – including the concept of eye relief which can matter a lot to those who wear eyeglasses. Discussed are Huygens, Ramsden, Kellner, RKE, Modified Achromat, Plossl and some advanced designs, plus some information about anti-reflection coatings. An excellent primer for anyone wanting to understand more about telescope eyepieces.
Hosted by David Fuller of “Eyes on the Sky,” this video discusses the basics of telescope magnification and focal ratio. Each concept is covered, guiding the viewer through how to calculate magnification of a telescope and eyepiece combination, and how to determine the focal ratio of a given telescope. An excellent primer for anyone wanting to understand more about telescopes.
In this video, Ken from Orion gives you some great advice on what to consider when purchasing a pair of Binoculars. He covers different factors like aperture, magnification, field of view, lens coatings, size and more so you can pick the pair that is best for your needs and budget.