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  IAU and UN: 400 years of the telescope

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Author Topic:   IAU and UN: 400 years of the telescope

Posts: 4803
From: Brussels, Belgium
Registered: Jan 2001

posted 03-22-2008 05:29 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Philip   Click Here to Email Philip     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I know several cS forum-members are keen amateur astronomers... so myself among these I wanted to have a topic on the celebration of four centuries since Galileo Galilei used a telescope for Astronomy.

But who invented the telescope?

Historical research has shown that Leonard Digges undoubtedly invented a reflecting telescope about a century before Isaac Newton did, and may also have made a refracting telescope.

However, the first patent-request for a telescope was made in 1608 by Dutch spectacle-maker Johannes Hans Lipperhey from Middelburg although two other spectacle-makers, Sacharias Jansen and Jacob Metius also claimed the invention.

Afterwards, the invention of the telescope was considered too easy to imitate to be awarded with a patent.

Of course in the 21st century we already have a large virtual telescope.

Philip Corneille


Posts: 4046
From: Geneva, Switzerland
Registered: May 2006

posted 03-20-2009 09:55 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for cspg   Click Here to Email cspg     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
And if I can "quote myself", my little note in the next issue of NASA's History Office newsletter:
Eyes on the Skies: 400 Years of Telescopic Discovery
by Govert Schilling and Lars Lindberg Christensen
(Wiley-VCH, February 2009)

Adopted as the official book of the International Year of Astronomy (IYA) 2009, this stunningly illustrated history of telescopic discovery spans the range from the first telescopes via the Hubble Space Telescope to next generation platforms, and how they have changed and continue to change our view of the universe, our place in it and where it all came from. The book features numerous full-page photographs and is printed in high-quality color throughout.

Also includes the official IYA DVD with 59 minutes of narrated text, expert comments and interviews, animations, computer simulations, science results, plus footage from observatories.


Posts: 961
Registered: Aug 2002

posted 04-03-2009 01:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for MarylandSpace   Click Here to Email MarylandSpace     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Two notes about astronomy...

First, a student stopped me in the high school cafeteria, and we talked his interest, astronomy, for about 25 minutes. He had stopped me because I was wearing a black Hubble Telescope Jacket (that my mother-in-law gave me). Today I gave him links to Tom G's Seattle site and I love it when students are curious.

Second, there is an article in our home town paper saying that one of Galileo's telescopes will be on display at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia until early September. As I enjoy seeing M-G-A space capsules, this might be a great artifact for our astronomy friends to see.


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