Telescope for observations with visible light / From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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An optical telescope is a telescope that gathers and focuses light mainly from the visible part of the electromagnetic spectrum, to create a magnified image for direct visual inspection, to make a photograph, or to collect data through electronic image sensors.
There are three primary types of optical telescope:
- Refracting telescopes, which use lenses and less commonly also prisms (dioptrics)
- Reflecting telescopes, which use mirrors (catoptrics)
- Catadioptric telescopes, which combine lenses and mirrors
An optical telescope's ability to resolve small details is directly related to the diameter (or aperture) of its objective (the primary lens or mirror that collects and focuses the light), and its light-gathering power is related to the area of the objective. The larger the objective, the more light the telescope collects and the finer detail it resolves.
People use optical telescopes (including monoculars and binoculars) for outdoor activities such as observational astronomy, ornithology, pilotage, hunting and reconnaissance, as well as indoor/semi-outdoor activities such as watching performance arts and spectator sports.