NASA’s flying telescope is coming to the end of its mission but leaves a strong science legacy

Most telescopes here on Earth are stationary, bound to a single location, often in a desert or on a mountain peak. But NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA) isn’t the most telescopes. SOFIA, for which NASA partnered with the German space agency (DLR), is a flying observatory. More specifically, it’s a Boeing 747SP aircraft … Read more

Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 114AZ telescope review

A Newtonian reflector with a 4.5-inch/114mm aperture, the Celestron StarSense Explorer LT 114AZ (opens in new tab) was designed for getting high magnification of bright objects in the night sky. Aimed at beginners, the LT 114AZ comes with StarSense technology, which is probably the finest solution currently available for aligning a telescope (save for ultra-expensive … Read more

Celestron Inspire 100AZ refractor telescope review

The Celestron Inspire 100AZ telescope ($359.95/£249) is worth investigating if you want to get great views of the moon, planets and more while experimenting with some basic astrophotography. Celestron Inspire 100AZ: Key specs Optical design: Refractor Aperture: 3.94-inch/100 mm Focal length: 25.98-inch/660 mm Focal ratio: f/6.5 Eyepiece focal length: 0.8-inch/20 mm (33x) and 0.4-inch/10 mm … Read more

Encalife SVBONY 501P 70 telescope review

The Encalife SVBONY 501P 70 telescope ($199.97/£169) may appear, at first glance, to be just what you’ve been looking at. Simple, lightweight and affordable, it’s got everything any beginner might want. Encalife SVBONY 501P 70: Key specs Optical design: refractor Aperture: 2.75-inch/70 mm Focal length: 15.74-inch/400 mm Focal ratio: f/5.7 Eyepiece focal length: 0.78-inch/20 mm … Read more

Sky-Watcher Explorer 130 EQ2 telescope review

The Sky-Watcher Explorer 130 telescope ($236/£195) has something most affordable telescopes lack. It ships with an equatorial mount (EQ2), which when aligned with Earth’s axis (something that’s extremely easy to do) allows it to more easily track objects as they appear to move across the night sky. Sky-Watcher Explorer 130 EQ2: Key Specs Optical design: … Read more

The James Webb Space Telescope never disproved the Big Bang

The James Webb Space Telescope (JWST) has not disproved the Big Bang, despite an article about a pseudoscientific theory that went viral in August, and which mischaracterized quotes from an astrophysicist to create a false narrative that the Big Bang didn’t happen. Although the James Webb Space Telescope has only been science operations for a … Read more

Vanois Vespera Observation Station smart telescope review

The Vaonis Vespera telescope ($2499/£1982) is the smallest smart telescope yet — and it looks the part. A smaller, lighter and more affordable version of its robotic bigger sister the Vaonis Stellina from French startup Vanois, the long-awaited Vespera (‘evening’ in Latin) is technically a camera and not a telescope. It has no eyepiece and … Read more

First exoplanet image from James Webb Space Telescope revealed

Unsubtracted and KLIP subtracted image stamps for the NIRCam F356W (top row) and MIRI F1140C (bottom row) filters. The leftmost column displays the median unsubtracted image for a single science roll, and all other columns display the KLIP subtracted images for ADI, RDI, and ADI+RDI subtraction methods using the maximum number of KLIP PCA modes. … Read more

Celestron AstroMaster 70AZ telescope review

The Celestron AstroMaster 70AZ telescope (opens in new tab) ($189.95/£130) is a small and reasonably lightweight 2.7-inch/70mm achromatic refractor aimed at beginners after true-color views of solar system objects. It comes with a tripod that can be used at either full or half-height and in the box are two eyepieces and a finderscope. Celestron AstroMaster … Read more