Q:

What are telescopes used for?

A:

Telescopes are used for gathering and analyzing the radiation released by distant objects. They are capable of operating at varying frequencies of the electromagnetic spectrum, including radio waves, gamma rays, microwave, infrared, ultraviolet and X-rays.

The main function of telescopes is collecting light. They can view fine details and record sights using cameras. Bigger telescopes can gather more light and can therefore see objects that are farther away. They can identify things at a greater distance and widen the expanse of the observable universe.

Optical telescopes are composed of lenses and mirrors that enlarge faraway things or improve the brightness of indistinct objects. Radio telescopes identify noise based on radio wavelengths in space. They can form an image of the object they listen to based on the sound they gather from that object.

Researchers use X-ray telescopes to acquire information on the sun, stars and supernovas. Gamma ray telescopes are used to verify various phenomena, such as black holes and pulsars. Reflecting telescopes provide incredibly detailed images of distant objects in the universe, including faraway galaxies, nebulae and dying stars.

Telescopes have a limited resolution due to disturbances and irregularities in the air. Their resolution cannot increase beyond the limit even if the size of the light-collecting aperture is made bigger. Many astronomers use telescopes atop mountains, because the telescopes can generate a better resolution due to the thinner atmosphere.

Learn More

Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is the name of Earth's natural satellite?

    A:

    The name of Earth's natural satellite is the moon. In terms of size, the moon is not the biggest natural satellite in the solar system, but it is large and ranks fifth among the other moons. In fact, the moon is one of the largest satellites compared to its planet.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How big is Titan?

    A:

    Titan is 3,200.051 miles in diameter. It the second-largest moon out of hundreds in the solar system and is Saturn's largest. Titan's mass is 80 percent greater than that of the Earth's moon, and its diameter is 50 percent longer than the diameter of the Earth's moon.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    What is the average temperature on Mercury?

    A:

    The average temperature on Mercury is 332 degrees Fahrenheit. The hottest temperatures on the planet can reach 801 degrees Fahrenheit, and temperatures can drop to as low as -279 degrees Fahrenheit.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:
  • Q:

    How long ago did the solar system form?

    A:

    The solar system formed approximately 4.6 billion years ago from clouds of dust and gas that were disrupted by astrophysical events. The shock wave began squeezing and clumping the clouds into a dense mass.

    Full Answer >
    Filed Under:

Explore