Sunday, April 9, 2017

Dragonfly


Yesterday I drove up to the Northeast Astronomy Forum in Rockland County.  It is one of the great astronomy gatherings in the world!  There is every piece of astronomical hardware on display, and lectures all day from some of the top astronomers in the country.  This talk was about something called Dragonfly.  Two brilliant astronomer friends came up with an idea to use some off the shelf Canon telephoto lenses for a multi-lens array that functions as a telescope in order to do ultra-low surface brightness astronomy at visible wavelengths..  For you photo fans, they are 400mm f/2.8 lenses at a cost of $10,000 each.  They started with a few lenses and then built an array of 24 of these!  Now they are up to 48 lenses.  The observatory is in New Mexico and they are doing breakthrough work in astronomy with this instrument.  You can see the array of 24 lenses in the slide behind the speaker, who is Bob Abraham, of the University of Toronto one of the two principal investigators..

3 comments:

Dean said...

Hey Ken- So what did you buy? I know you can't get out of those things without spending some money! -Dean

Ken Spencer said...

Hi Dean: This is nuts... I bought NOTHING, believe it or not. What I wanted was the Baader Neodymium "Moonlight" filter in 1.25" size. No one had one... My whole day was ruined... :-)

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