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Robp

3D printed telescope

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Think the "10 times" bit is  rubbish. That would be 1000 pounds worth of kit - you could get the same (using Raspberry PI £40) using say a DOB 250mm OTA and mount for £600(new)

IMHO - The 3d printing bit is the important issue as many of those on here already know as they are doing 3d printing - its how to compete with China and the like

Plus where are the plans done a google can't find the plans - anyone else been able to find them ?

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They're not the first people to leave out the secondary and stick a camera there instead, the Pi's camera is not great and will be rubbish for DSO or planetary and it looks like the only thing they've 3d printed is the camera holder and perhaps the primary cell.  Image as good as a telescope costing 10 times as much is crazy talk IMO.  but hey Sheffield University will like the PR.  I'm just surprised there's no LEGO in there.

Edited by Joseki

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Think the "10 times" bit is  rubbish. That would be 1000 pounds worth of kit - you could get the same (using Raspberry PI £40) using say a DOB 250mm OTA and mount for £600(new)

IMHO - The 3d printing bit is the important issue as many of those on here already know as they are doing 3d printing - its how to compete with China and the like

Plus where are the plans done a google can't find the plans - anyone else been able to find them ?

forget about the 10" newt,

this photo

http://alternative-photonics.com/2014/09/

suggests it's a cheap Celestron mount so perhaps  130 Astromaster.  The scope & mount costs more than £100 so they're not including the mount costs (or perhaps the donor scope that provided the mirror).  With that reckoning you should compare it to a cheap webcam (£5?) , longer tube and perhaps a metal ruler to stick it too.  - 3D printing is fun though.

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Twitter links with more details:

https://twitter.com/PiKonCamera

sorry for spamming this thread - but I don't get the name "disruptive technology telescope", I'm not sure how it's disruptive - does that mean I'm too old?

Edited by Joseki

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Twitter links with more details:

https://twitter.com/PiKonCamera

sorry for spamming this thread - but I don't get the name "disruptive technology telescope", I'm not sure how it's disruptive - does that mean I'm too old?

Disruptive as in "how to disrupt my enjoyment of the hobby"

I am not impressed by that first test image: loads of glare, small FOV compared to even a cheap EP. An image of the highest surface brightness target in the night sky is hardly a test of the capabilities of the scope.

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Those spider vanes look awfully thick, and the ribbon cable is adding handsomely to central obstruction. The twitter images show horrible colour gradients across the image. This kind of image looks OK for a first afocal shot with a shaky phone cam, but not good at all as examples of what the scope can do. If those are the best images, colour me unimpressed.

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Poor test image linked to some dubious claims. Would be interesting to see what their scope is really capable of, but they have shot themselves in the foot there.

Edited by Knight of Clear Skies
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Poor test image linked to some dubious claims. Would be interesting to see what their scope is really capable of, but they have shot themselves in the foot there.

Both feet :D

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As far as I can tell at the moment, the story is actually that they've 3d-printed some components that allow them to mount an RPi camera in the place of a standard newt's secondary.  Perhaps they 3d-printed the tube too.

It's hardly a novel idea to put a camera, nor even a digital camera at the focus of the primary mirror -- just look at the Hyperstar kit for a start.  My recollection of the RPi camera spec (even the one with the IR filter removed) is that it's hardly a decent astro camera either and assuming the image at the top of the piece actually came from such a rig I think that's absolutely borne out.

The only novelty I see here is the 3d-printing bit and to be honest even that doesn't seem particularly well thought out.  The ribbon cable flopping about in front of the aperture is going to cause further diffraction and loss of contrast.  I'd have been far more impressed if they'd run the connections through the centre of one of the spider vanes which look plenty wide enough to allow it.

I can't even really see that it can really represent much of a reduction in cost over buying a standard telescope.  The article suggests that you still have to buy a mirror (and "lens", whatever that is used for) which must surely represent the majority of the cost of any OTA?

James

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OK! you are criticising the telescope for various flaws which I agree with. :iamwithstupid:

We live in an age where we expect everything to be in pristine condition, razor sharp optics, dust-free manufacturing plants, quality control, etc. and we pay £x00's & £x000's/$x00's & $x000's to get this, unless we DIY. The way I look at it is what would Lippershay, Galileo, Newton, Gregory, Lord Rosse & other telescope inventors be saying if they were alive today. We have come along way since they invented their telescopes.

The spirit of inventiveness and eccentricity lives on! :hello2:

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OK! you are criticising the telescope for various flaws which I agree with. :iamwithstupid:

We live in an age where we expect everything to be in pristine condition, razor sharp optics, dust-free manufacturing plants, quality control, etc. and we pay £x00's & £x000's/$x00's & $x000's to get this, unless we DIY. The way I look at it is what would Lippershay, Galileo, Newton, Gregory, Lord Rosse & other telescope inventors be saying if they were alive today. We have come along way since they invented their telescopes.

The spirit of inventiveness and eccentricity lives on! :hello2:

I do not mind the tinkering one bit. If they presented it as "hey we spent some time tinkering and look at this proof of concept prototype" I would have few problems. As it is presented as "disruptive technology" with "performance of a scope X times more costly"  I object to it as misleading.

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I do not mind the tinkering one bit. If they presented it as "hey we spent some time tinkering and look at this proof of concept prototype" I would have few problems. As it is presented as "disruptive technology" with "performance of a scope X times more costly"  I object to it as misleading.

Exactly so.  They've done pretty much nothing novel and have presented it as some sort of major breakthrough.  Even if the primary goal is to produce something at low cost I just don't see that it stacks up.  Give me £150 (which would include everything required) and I could capture an image as good as, if not better than, the one on the BBC website.  Given that the article suggests that you need to buy a mirror, and you'd have to buy the RPi and camera, and you still need a mount, I'm struggling to see how this somehow "democratises technology".

James

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I think the problem here is reading about, Sheffield subcontracted out to someone to make some form of 3D printed telescope for the purposes of having some interesting stuff to talk about in their 'festival of minds' - which is fine of course but then someone, perhaps the University PR staff decided to spin it as Sheffield Researchers reinvent the telescope which is more debatable.

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Wow, the should have sub headed the article "DIY telescope costing £100 produces images 10x worse than mass produced telescope costing £100".  3D printing has many possibilities to be a 'game changer', but doing something far worse than the Chinese can do it for the same money isn't one of them.

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When they can 3-D print the lambda/10 optics then I wil be impressed.

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I will be much more impressed when they can 3D print a Fabry-Perot etalon for H-alpha (requirements  better than 1/100th Lambda). Well, maybe one day, it has to start somewhere

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A colleague pointed this BBC article out to me today.  I  was like other posters here,  distinctly unimpressed. But what really gets me is the appalling reporting by the BBC.

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The picam can expose up to about 30 seconds before the Pi's GPU gives up. Surpisingly high resolution too, for its size.

As gkec says, the article gives the impression it's been written by someone with little knowledge of telescopes or 3D printing, leaving me wondering what exactly has been printed here...clearly not the mount, the mirror, dovetail...the tube perhaps?

3D printing is great fun, as is the Raspberry Pi, and it's nice to see someone trying to do something useful with the technology and combine it with astronomy, even if, pardon the pun, we're left a bit in the dark here. Be interesting to see what the future holds.

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I like this forum, it's a friendly place. If I post an image, idea or just an opinion it is always met with positive comments and constructive criticism when necessary. But... when there is any astronomy related article in the newspapers or news websites why do we feel the need to tear it apart and rubbish it?

The makers of that telescope are very possibly members on here, would you be happy speaking some of the above comments to their faces?

I say they've done well for getting astronomy/astro-photography into the papers and wish them well with their next attempt.

Edited by wuthton
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The picam can expose up to about 30 seconds before the Pi's GPU gives up. Surpisingly high resolution too, for its size.

As gkec says, the article gives the impression it's been written by someone with little knowledge of telescopes or 3D printing, leaving me wondering what exactly has been printed here...clearly not the mount, the mirror, dovetail...the tube perhaps?

3D printing is great fun, as is the Raspberry Pi, and it's nice to see someone trying to do something useful with the technology and combine it with astronomy, even if, pardon the pun, we're left a bit in the dark here. Be interesting to see what the future holds.

I was under the impression the pi's GPU counters ran out after 1 or 2 seconds. Things must have moved on and an upgraded GPU since the last time I looked at it. Which Pi model and camera do you have. Do,you know if the NOIR will do 30 seconds aswell as that would be better for astro imaging.

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