If you would love to see deeper into space from your own home, you may be interested in buying your very own telescope! Fortunately, Sky & Telescope has some guidelines to help you make this big purchase, as described by Kelly Beatty in her recent article, “How to Choose Your First Telescope.”
Here are some highlights from the article:
- You can sometimes find a good telescope form around $250, but most great ones will cost at least $400.
- There are three types of telescopes that you can purchase for personal use. Refractors are the most common and have a lens at their front end. Reflectors have a mirror in the back and tend to be the cheapest. Compound telescopes are more complex, but they are often smaller and less cumbersome than the other two types. You can see the types of telescopes in the image below.
- It is important to consider the type of tripod or mount that comes with your telescope, so you can use it easily.
- Above all else, make sure to think about the aperture you desire for your telescope. This is the diameter of the telescope’s lens or mirror and determines the detail in which you can see objects at a given distance.
For more inspiration, Deep-Sky Watch has a great article called “What Can You See With Different Telescopes” that shows you what you may expect to be looking at with a telescope of your own.
Whether or not you choose to purchase a telescope, hopefully you have learned more about these amazing devices!