The first telescope for amateur astrophotographers is getting a much-needed upgrade.
A new telescope called the Astrography System (AS) is scheduled to launch next year and will be powered by an upgraded version of the Hubble Space Telescope.
Its purpose is to enable astronomers to create a panoramic, high-resolution image of the cosmos.
The telescope’s first component, called the Aperture Science Platform (ASP), will take the first images of the night sky from space and will enable astronomers with more advanced equipment to capture images of galaxies and other objects at the edges of the observable universe.
The Aperture Research Telescope (ARC) is slated to launch in 2019 and will provide a new platform for astronomers to use for the first time.
ARC is equipped with three large, ultra-sensitive cameras and a high-speed, infrared telescope that will be able to produce more than 50,000 images per hour.
Astrographies and astrophotographic instruments have been used to explore the edges and corners of the universe for more than 1.3 billion years.
But the technology is still in its infancy and not yet used in the production of high-quality, high resolution images.
The telescope will allow astronomers to take full advantage of the new capabilities.
“With a telescope that’s a bit bigger and more powerful than the Hubble, you’ll be able create a much wider field of view and get a lot more images,” said astrophotographer and co-author of the study, Stephen Kostelnik, of the University of New Mexico.
“We’re talking about a telescope with a resolution of about 10 million times that of Hubble.”
The ARC is not the only new telescope that could become available for amateur astronomers.
A new, highly-refined instrument called the Advanced Camera for Surveys (ACS), which was developed in collaboration with the University at Buffalo, is scheduled for launch in 2021.
The ACS is a five-element, dish-shaped telescope designed to be mounted in a dome-like shape.
The system will use two separate coronagraphs, one designed to focus light on objects, and one designed for taking images of faint objects in the sky.
The ACS is designed to take images that would take up to 20 years to capture on a Hubble Space Observatory, but astronomers say it could speed up the process of getting their images.
Astrophotographers can take images of objects in a way that Hubble could not before, said Kostelski.
“In fact, if you have an instrument like Hubble that’s already designed to do this, you’re already getting the data.”
The ACS will be mounted on a NASA-designed, $2 billion satellite called the Wide Field Imager (WFIRST).
The spacecraft will measure a million objects and create images of more than 100 million galaxies.
“What we’re doing is using a new, low-cost, high quality instrument, called a coronagraph,” said Kustelnik.
“We’re able to do these images at much higher resolution than Hubble.”
Scientists will use the new telescope to look for other objects in our galaxy, such as supermassive black holes.
The WFIRST will be used to study the supermassive stars that live in these stars.
Astronomers say that supermassive star formation will be one of the key areas where this new telescope will help.
In a new study, Kostellnik and colleagues used data from the WFIRst to calculate the number of supermassive Black Hole candidates in our Milky Way.
The study found that there are about 1,000 supermassive candidates in the Milky Way, about 50 of which are in our own galaxy.
The team calculated that each supermassive candidate has a mass of 1 billion times that found in the Andromeda galaxy, and the number is increasing every day.
Astronomers are particularly interested in supermassive dwarf stars, which are very dense and have masses much smaller than the masses of planets orbiting them.
The dwarf stars are found in galaxies like our own, but are often far too small to be detected by current telescopes.
“Supermassive dwarfs are the ones we’re most interested in, because they’re super dense, and because we’re seeing them as a function of the size of the galaxy they reside in,” said study co-lead author Daniel Kallon, an astrophysicist at the University’s Sloan Digital Sky Survey.
The new telescope is just the first step towards the development of a truly universal astronomy system.
It will enable the creation of new telescopes capable of taking images at wavelengths that could only be seen by a telescope made with Hubble and the AAS.
“It’s an exciting time for astrophysics,” said co-principal investigator of the Astrophysics Cluster, Andrew Kiely, of University of California, Berkeley.
“The combination of a telescope and a camera that can go beyond Hubble and that can be used in astronomy is the most exciting development in the last century of astronomy.”