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Schmidt Newtonian

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Posted by Robert May on November 12, 2004 23:41:10 UTC

The Schmidt Newtonian is not the same as a Newtonian in the mirror shape.
In the Newtonian scope, the primary mirror is a parabolic shape so that the light from the distant star (essentially parallel light) needs to have a parabolic mirror to focus the light to a single point.
In the Schmidt Newtonian, the Schmidt corrector plate modifies the light rays so that a spherical mirror can be used to focus the light to a single point.
Thus there is a difference between the two variations of the design. The first design (the original design of Newton) produces a large amount of coma due to the basic action of the parabolic mirror while the coma is much reduced (to near 0) while the other aberrations inherent in the design maintain their strength and thus become predominate in the much reduced errors in the design.
Thus the Schmidt Newtonian produce a much more accurate image than the original Newtonian design.

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