Saturday, October 12, 2013

Galileoscope : a Beginner's Approach

First of all, putting together the Galileoscope  was HARD. I was so afraid to break the itsy bitsy lenses, but the final product is worth it. Whole our first assignment of this blog was to find an object in the daylight and focus on it, I went straight for the moon the first but I did finally go back and worked the Galileoscope in the day. I had to share Gabi's  scope ( she is so wonderful for letting me use it) and we focused the Galileoscope of the metal ball atop the flagpole.

The lowest power lens ( I am working with microscopes in Physiology and I  want really badly to call  this lens Scanning power but I usually say the name correctly) is inverted   ( as is the high power lens) so the ball is upside down and looks a bit mind boggling. Thankfully we switch lenses to  medium power to see how  small the  field of view was as compared to   Low power ( which has the  largest field of view ( FOV)). Feeling gutsy Gabi inserted the high power lens after assembling it and took in  the inverted view. In the daylight it wasn't too impressive to either of us.

Going back to my moon observation, I've learned tripods are a pain if you cant see where your placing them. It took me  a little while to get the moon in my sights as I was eager to see as much of the detailed moon surface before . This was October 8th at about 8 o' clock and I felt a surge of pride in focusing it correctly. There are craters but also darker impressions in the surface, which I'm guessing are old "lava lakes" or lava channels from when there was lava on the moon.  the Darker areas might also very well be a thicker layer of dust in those areas.

I sketched  the moon on my paper ( the way it normally looks not inverted) and I redrew the sketch on  my computer here is what I saw , the first quarter moon : My drawing program crashed but I have the general idea of what I saw down.

Other than putting the Telescope together, which kept me flustered as putting telescopes together isn't my strong suit, I really like the Galileoscopes because  I am making my own observations with something  I built, which is a good feeling. I don't   really like the inverted lenses because it takes my brain a second or two longer to process where everything is and such but it's a welcome challenge, I especially to someone who doesn't have and really has no clue how to work professional grade telescopes. I am so lucky as to have gotten to use a Galileoscope, as you mentioned we might be the last class to use them.

I can see how Galileo would be completely awed by  the sight of the moon magnified in his telescope. To see the bumps and ridges that are blurred and softened with only the naked eye. I know I felt a chill down my spine seeing  the moon like that, that sense of discovery  surely ran through the great Galileo himself that first glimpse of the moon and all of it's glory. He must've diagrammed and observed  with the aide of his telescope ( as we did) making it very vital to him. I would hope he was excited ( I am not at liberty to  as him).


  1. Jamie,
    You are so funny. But why did you have to use Gabi's telescope? Didn't you bring one home, too?

  2. I only used hers during class when we went outside, I had already taken mine home the day before. I have a Galileoscope and it is resting peacefully at my house, I might as well bring it back this week,