Thanks to the good people at Astrosweden, the real fun can begin! Last week saw the arrival of our astronomical cameras and telescope, with the team almost immediately rushing to try everything out. The cameras are a ZWO ASI183MM, which takes 20 MP images in monochrome, and with the addition of an infrared filter, will be our primary camera for taking pictures of astronomical objects. Its partner is a ZWO ASI120MM, which will take images in the visible spectrum through the guide scope, so that the team has a way of verifying that the telescope is pointed to where it should be pointed, should we find ourselves off-centre at any time.
The telescope is a Skywatcher BKP 130DS, and is of Newtonian design-- this means that instead of using heavy, glass lenses to focus the light from distant objects, it uses a pair of mirrors (one concave, the primary; and one flat, the secondary) to do the same. This construction is simple, and much lighter than other types of telescope, but is quite long. Test images taken through each of the finder scope and telescope itself revealed no major problems with the equipment and optics (just that we need practice with the focus!), so the team is looking forward to further testing over the weeks to come, and starting to bring the project together!