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The David H. Levy Comet Hunter™ is a rich field telescope (RFT), capable of showing faint objects over a wide field of view (generally two degrees or more). Comet hunters like Levy use RFTs to visually sweep the sky for comets, but this type of telescope is also preferred for observing all types of faint, deep sky objects such as nebulae and galaxies. The Comet Hunter comes standard with a two-inch, 30mm focal length eyepiece with a wide 70° apparent field. This eyepiece combined with the short focal length of the telescope produce an amazing 2.86 ° true field of view with a 6.2mm exit pupil.
Sometimes called visual equalization magnfication, using the right low power eyepiece eyepiece will produce an exit pupil that nearly matches the fully dialated eye. This allows you to see to the faintest observable limit of the telescope's aperture, which is critical for searching for faint objects such as distant comets. We selected a 30mm eyepiece as standard equipment because the exit pupil it produces comes close to the average fully dialated human eye.
Most RFTs while perfect for comets, nebulae, and galaxies are not optimized for high magnification observations of planets. Explore Scientific's Scott Roberts explains:
"Our challenge was to design a portable instrument that has enough aperture to observe the broad range of celestial objects with an optimized optical design to serve as a true RFT that can also work well for high magnification observations of planets. We also wanted the telescope to serve as a serious optical solution for astroimaging. In short, we wanted a telescope that could do almost anything; a telescope that would be perfect for beginners to advanced astronomers alike."
"To solve the problem, we chose a Maksutov-Newtonian optical design. The Maksutov corrector lens is a great solution that produce round star images that are well corrected from center to edge. Durable Enhanced Multilayer Deposition (EMD™) Coatings with a multicoated Maksutov corrector lens and enhanced coatings on the primary and secondary mirrors deliver bright, high transmission images across the visual spectrum."
"Aside from the fact that this is a fantastic visual instrument, the Comet Hunter with its fast f/4.8 focal ratio, light-weight zero-expansion carbon fiber tube, and two-speed focuser, is a true astrograph, perfect for use with popular CCD astroimaging cameras."
Each Comet Hunter™ special edition telescope will come with a certificate signed by David Levy and is covered under our standard U.S.A. One Year Limited Warranty against defects with proof of purchase, but you can extend this limited warranty to five years by simply filling out the product registration and mailing it in within 60 days.