3D Printed Telescope Could be a Game Changer

Posted on Nov 5 2014 - 2:45pm by Robert

The number of exciting gadgets and other cool stuff produced using 3D printers is growing all the time.

Among the most fascinating new objects printed in this way is a telescope made for £100 by researchers at the University of Sheffield. Now they have shown to the world the first pictures they took using this telescope. They say that the snaps from the PiKon model are of a similar quality to ones taken using far more expensive telescopes.

The images taken were shown off during a science festival in Sheffield and show excellent pictures of the surface of the moon. The plans for the telescope are now on the internet, so anyone who has a 3D printer can print one-off for themselves.

democratizing Technology

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Mark Wrigley is a physicist who is one of the brains behind PiKon and he said that he hopes that it will be a “game changer” and that is all about “democratising technology” by making it cheap and easily available.

The telescope is built around a cheap Raspberry Pi computer and uses Isaac Newton’s reflecting telescope design. The small-scale of the computer means that it can be mounted right in front of the mirror. Apart from the 3D printed elements, the rest of the telescope involves the likes of a mirror and a lens that can be found for sale online.

The telescope can magnify the night sky by 160 times, meaning that it is possible to get great views of the moon as well as the stars and some of the nearby planets.

What are the first things you would print off if you owned a 3D printer?

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