See through scopes

 

Once upon a time when you looked at a telescope you could pretty much guarantee that it would be in an enclosed tube either of rolled aluminium or plastic in the case of some reflectors. Yet look at some of the more famous professional telescopes and the first thing that may strike you is the open truss arrangement of many, if not all, of them. This design allows a free flow of air around and through the scope 'tube' which helps in cooling down the mirror to the ambient temperature. Today this design is becoming more common in many amateur telescopes, take last month's review of the Sky Vision T300 compact Dobsonian for instance. Often if it's good enough for the professionals then naturally many new innovations eventually appear in the amateur market as well.

So it should come as no surprise that the latest large astrographic telescopes coming on the market for advanced amateurs also incorporate this Serrurier truss design. Steve Richards had the opportunity to review the Altair Astro RC 250 Truss Tube astrograph in this month's issue for those who like something a bit different!

In the meantime, manufacturers are still looking at innovating and improving the refractor, especially those aimed at the intermediate market without having to break the bank (too much!). I enjoyed my time with SkyWatcher’s Esprit 100ED Triplet for both imaging and viewing despite the UK weather whilst Pete Lawrence explored the ZWO ASI130MM monochrome camera. It's good to see that regardless of what equipment it is, manufacturers are still trying to improve and innovate and that has to be a good thing for our hobby so grab your copy of the June issue to see how we all got on.

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