Resolving Power of a Telescope

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Equation / Last modified by KurtHeckman on 2019/08/15 23:58
Rating
ID
sspickle.Resolving Power of a Telescope
UUID
3b8c8709-3d8a-11e7-9770-bc764e2038f2

The Resolving Power of a Telescope calculator computes the angular distance between two stars on the limit of visibility for a telescope.

INSTRUCTIONS: Choose your preferred units and enter the following:

  • (λ)  This is the wavelength of light
  • (D) This the the diameter of the telescope.

Resolving Power: The calculator returns the Resolving Power (α) in  arc seconds.  

General Information

The resolving power of a telescope is the angular distance between two stars that are just barely visible through the telescope as separate images. The resolving power α in arc seconds of a telescope with diameter D in meters that is collecting light of wavelength λ in nanometers equals is given by this formula.

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