For many people, amateur astronomy (i.e., star-gazing) is an exciting and enjoyable hobby – one that lets you connect with the vastness of space while learning more about planets, stars and other cosmic phenomenon. Now there’s a new gadget that lets you attach your iPhone 4 to any telescope and take pictures of the deep reaches of space.
Called AstroClip, the molded plastic clip connects easily to your iPhone 4 and allows you to attach it to any telescope that uses a 1.25-inch eyepiece. Once you attach the clip by snapping it on your iPhone 4 – and then adjusting three small screws to secure the accessory to your telescope – you can then take pictures of the sky, or any distant object for that matter, using your iPhone.
Shoot the Moon…and More
The concept of the AstroClip is not new; astronomers have been attaching cameras to telescopes for years. However, such camera mounts have typically only worked with specific models or with heavier cameras that often made it necessary to start using a bulkier telescope tripod to keep the telescope from falling over.
The AstroClip, because it works in conjunction with the featherweight iPhone 4, doesn’t put an excessive weight strain on your telescope’s tripod. Nor will AstroClip put a strain your wallet, as it costs just $25 (which includes shipping anywhere on our planet). Previous camera mounts carried significantly larger pricetags. AstroClip is a great deal for a novice astronomer.
Follow Your Star
Unlike many hobbies that are scientific in nature, amateur astronomers actually play a key role in making genuine discoveries. Just recently, an amateur astronomer in Austria discovered a nebula created as a star began dying. Matthias Kronberger’s “soccer ball” nebula discovery was validated by Hawaii’s Gemini Observatory.
It may look a little like a blue soccer ball, but it’s really a nebula – the last gasps of a dying star. This amazing gaseous form was discovered by an amateur astronomer in Austria, and later confirmed by scientists, who named the discovery “Kronberger 61” after the stargazer who found it. (Credit: Gemini Observatory/AURA)
Want to have a star named after you? Maybe you want to discover your own planet? Today’s technology puts scientific wonders within everyone’s reach. For aspiring astrophysicists, you just need to start your adventures in science and you too could unlock the keys to the universe.
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