Refracting telescope models are telescopes that use glass lenses rather than mirrors to sharpen and magnify a distant image. Invented in the fifteenth century, the famous Galileo telescope was one such example. They work by using two glass lenses, a convex lens and a concave lens. The concave lens focuses the light reflecting off a distant object into a single focal point. The convex lens inside the telescope spreads that light from the focal point to your eye, allowing the viewer to have a clearer view than ever thought possible of a distant object.
Refracting scopes are available for purchase, just like reflecting telescopes. Thought refraction telescopes are not really feasible for use in the huge telescopes, they are perfectly appropriate for the much smaller telescopes used by amateur star gazers. They are also perfectly fine to use in gun scopes and binoculars. Because there is some aberration to the image in refraction, refracting models come in many different designs to reduce this. Thus, there’s not any one standard design for these types of telescopes, as each one alters the problem differently.
Despite their widespread use, they aren’t great for large telescopes for several reasons. That’s not to say that they are never used as large telescopes, because they are. In fact, there are examples of large refracting models all over the world, but more and more, scientists are opting for different types of telescopes, including reflecting telescopes. It is mainly because these types of telescopes rely on glass lenses, and glass has its own set of problems that are most easily solved by simply switching to mirrors instead.
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