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Posts Made By: Paul Kammueller

July 5, 2002 06:23 AM Forum: Refractors

% light loss due to chromatic aberration?

Posted By Paul Kammueller

Does anyone know of any data that would indicate what percentage of light loss one effectively experiences with achromats of various sizes & focal ratios, etc. since certain proportions of certain wavelengths get scattered -- i.e. violet light gets scattered the most in many achromats, but is there a way to know what percentage of the total incoming white light that represents? Is it meaningful? Is it on the order of <1%, 1%, 5% ?


October 24, 2002 08:59 PM Forum: Eyepieces

Re: Why the low power?

Posted By Paul Kammueller

It could possibly be more effective for finding super-faint diffuse objects. By lowering the power, you concentrate the same amount of available light into a smaller area, rendering a diffuse object 20% smaller in size but 56% brighter (per unit area) to the eye. So if it's at the threshold of perception in your scope you *might* be more likely to spot it in a 40mm. But it would increase background skyglow by the same degree, a filter might probably be needed to make the difference really effective.

October 30, 2002 05:44 AM Forum: Telescope Making

What's the WORST scope you ever built?

Posted By Paul Kammueller

When I was in high school (around 20 yrs ago) I once built a refractor using a 5.25" plano-convex surplus single-lens objective with a thick green meniscus lens for the eyepiece. Tube of PVC. Actually, the mount, everything was PVC. Venus was an amorphous blob with rainbows streaming all around it. Could see craters on the Moon -- Copernicus, and maybe 2 others. The thing was impossible to point. Certainly not my finest hour. It may have been my cheapest hour though.

November 5, 2002 02:00 PM Forum: Deep Sky Observing

Reasons to like clouds

Posted By Paul Kammueller

1) You gotta sleep sometime. Saturn's up all night!
2) Gives you opportunity to shop Astromart ads
3) Gives you opportunity to work on scope projects
4) Maintain healthy nighttime 'marital relations'

Anybody got more?
Greetings from cloudy Minnesota (light snow today)

November 6, 2002 11:29 PM Forum: Deep Sky Observing

Another day in the life

Posted By Paul Kammueller

- 9:00 pm -- set up 10" f/8 dob in backyard (ooooof!)
- 9:20 pm -- put daughter to bed
- 9:40 pm -- say goodnight to wife
-10:15 pm -- check the sky, still clear!
-10:20 pm -- doze on the couch with cat, wait for Saturn to rise high enough for decent views
-12:10 am -- wake up, make a cup of tea, have some cereal
-12:45 am -- repair one eyepiece, get goodies ready
- 1:00 am -- walk outside & look up. Clouds.
- 1:00-1:15 am -- wander around yard in a daze wishing clouds not here, wondering where they came from and where the hell were they 3 hours ago
- 1:30 am -- put scope away (oooof!). go to bed. Probably not sleep because wired on tea now.

'Night everybody.

November 18, 2002 12:18 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Re: god vs: no god

Posted By Paul Kammueller

This is just one of those things where nobody can realistically change anybody else's mind.

Ultimately we're all scientists, drawing our conclusions from our own observations. Those observations include what we see in our telescopes and what we hear from scribes who lived thousands of years ago. What we interpret will vary by our own experiences, prejudices and how emotions and logic interact in each of our respective minds.

The existence or non-existence of something so abstract and unknowable as God, or heaven, or hell, is something that reasonable, moral people can disagree on since it can never be proved nor disproved. Everyone seeks Truth on this subject and everyone arrives at their own Truth to varying degrees of satisfaction. I think deep down we're all basically guessing and like scientists we then present arguments to support that hypothesis.

December 10, 2002 12:56 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Re: FE/chiseling or protectionism???

Posted By Paul Kammueller

To try to anchor this thread here and off the ATM forum.

December 10, 2002 09:20 PM Forum: Telescope Making

What's the CHEAPEST scope you ever built?

Posted By Paul Kammueller

I should get some kind of prize for this. Total cost was about 2 bucks plus a few pennies worth of glue. 1" aperture refractor, objective and eyepiece both surplus achromats for $1 each, the dewshield is a plastic aspirin bottle with the bottom cut out and painted silver, everything else including the stand, the drawtube, the front tube, all were parts from the inside of an old copying machine. Not a good scope for deep-sky though.

December 12, 2002 09:46 PM Forum: Off Topic Discussions

Re: Given up on the moon

Posted By Paul Kammueller

Yeah but I remember reading and older space flight book from the late 1950's and they envisioned a future of first low-orbit flights, then space stations around earth, etc. and THEN in the distant future beyond that, people going to the Moon, Mars, and so forth. They never envisioned some mad-dash-to-the-moon-and-forget-about-it decade. Why would they? It would have sounded kind of nuts!

Of course, once poeple landed on the moon the pundits forecast escalation of similar events. It's human nature to extrapolate whatever is happening NOW into the most likely future. Though it almost never works.

I think what is happening now is probably more 'natural' development of space -- develop the low-earth-orbit realm first. Then, with that infrastructure in place, slowly reach out further, to the Moon, Mars, etc. Baby steps!

Sure it's slow, it's boring. But that's kind of how evolution works, and I believe the reaching into space is a stage of evolution, one that is comparable to sea creatures leaving the water to take a crack at living on the land.

And besides, sooner or later, we're just gonna go to Mars because it's there. Whatever else is going on, it'll happen sometime.

December 23, 2002 08:01 AM Forum: Religion

RE: Basic underlying right...

Posted By Paul Kammueller

I would say the right and the concept of such rights is necessary for a society-species as specialized as ours to continue. We depend upon each other for our very survival. Most of us wouldn't do as well out on our own: we have no fangs, no claws, and very little fur.

To disregard each other's right to live would mean degenerating back into an uncivilized species that is not mutually inter-dependent but in which each individual is a self-sufficient island. Which does nothing to further the species' success, so the opposite happens: we as a group attempt to weed out the aberrants that show such disregard for the group.