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Binoculars and Telescopes: A Magnified View Towards Their Invention

Binoculars and telescopes have eased our way to look at the world with a closer and magnified view. We can see distant objects conveniently because of these optical instruments. In the binoculars, similar telescopes are mounted on a single frame, one for each eye. They are also named field glasses.

While watching your favorite game from the stadium, admiring the beauty of birds, wild animals, or anything that you desire to pay close attention to, binoculars are of great help.

History of Discovery and Evolution

Around 3500 BCE, Phoenicians discovered glass while cooking. However, another 5000 years were taken for inventing the glass that was shaped into a lens for creating the first-ever telescope. From the 16th century, Hans Lippershey of Holland is believed to be the inventor of lenses and is often credited for the same. Although he wasn’t the one behind this great invention, he did create a new device that gained popularity.

The Brilliant Minds!

Galileo Galilei, the great Italian scientist was the one who introduced the telescope to the world of astronomy in 1609. He was the first lucky man to see the craters of the moon. He further worked upon discovering the sunspots, four large moons of Jupiter, and the rings of Saturn, and was successful in his discovery. Galileo’s telescope appears to be similar to the opera glasses. To get a magnified view, an arrangement of glass lenses was attached to the telescope. This arrangement magnified up to 30 times the actual size, but it wasn’t wide enough to see the entire moon. That’s why Galileo was able to see the quarter of the moon’s face without repositioning his telescope.

In 1704 Sir Isaac Newton introduced a modification in the telescope’s design. He replaced the glass lenses with a curved mirror. The curved shape helped gather light and efficiently reflect it towards the point of focus. The larger the size of the curved mirror, the bigger will be the amount of light it will gather.

Binoculars were produced in the late 17th century and early 19th century. Cherubin d’Orleans, Pietro Patroni and I.M. Dobler were the ones indulged in its production. However, they weren’t successful because of their clumsy organization and low quality. Thus, J.P. Lemiere won the credit for producing the perfect binoculars.

The Short telescope, invented by Scottish optician and astronomer James Short in 1740. Following Newton’s design with some modifications, it came out to be the first-ever perfect telescope. It was a parabolic, elliptic, distortionless mirror ideal for the reflecting telescopes.

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