New Year’s Message from Tele Vue Optics

Looking back and ahead with Tele Vue President David Nagler.
Tele Vue Optics, Inc. President David Nagler.
2017 was an exciting year for Tele Vue and our hobby: certainly the August 21st, 2017 Great American Eclipse dominated the headlines. In our blog coverage of the grand event, we took a peek inside NASA’s eclipse imaging SOLAR LAB and recounted our totality adventures in Tellico Plains, TN, Columbia, SC, and Nashville, TN.

Artwork inspired by images and data from Dr. Bruns’ website.

This was my first total eclipse.  My father has seen four.  Experiencing a total solar eclipse was a far more profound event than I could’ve imagined.  It’s kind of like trying to describe the feeling of parenthood before versus after having kids; no matter what you’ve been told or your expectations, nothing prepares you for the actual event. I now get what my father was trying to tell me (about eclipses and parenthood).  Sharing it with family and friends (new and old) was an incredible bonding experience.

While 2018 brings no total solar eclipse, the one piece of news we look forward to is publication of the results from Dr. Don Bruns’s attempt to recreate Sir Arthur Eddington’s 1919 experiment which made Dr. Albert Einstein (and his Theory of General Relativity) a house-hold name. The goal was not merely to recreate the experiment, but to measure gravitational deflection of starlight passing near our Sun to an unprecedented degree of accuracy using equipment readily available to amateur astronomers.  We were quite pleased to work closely with Dr. Bruns throughout his preparation for his attempt. Supplying the necessary performance data of our Tele Vue-NP101is APO telescope design allowed him to understand the contribution the telescope would make to the images and positions of stars.  How well does production meet design?  Without spoiling any surprises, Dr. Bruns sent us an update shortly after taking his shots from Casper, WY saying he had perfect exposure, focus, and timing. Dr. Bruns will present his findings at the 2018 NEAF convention, where we will display the very scope that he used.  If you’re coming to NEAF, (and why wouldn’t you?) stop by our booth to meet us and Dr. Bruns.

Also in 2017, we commemorated the 40th anniversary of the founding of Tele Vue by encouraging the use of the #televue40 hashtag (solar, nature, DSOs, and our scopes) on images made with or of our products. Last year was also the 10th anniversary of an achievement I’m particularly proud of, the introduction of the 13mm Ethos eyepiece.  It was first in the line of highly corrected, 100° apparent field of view eyepieces available to the amateur astronomer and regarded as a leap in eyepiece advancement for the amateur astronomer equivalent to the introduction of the 13mm Nagler.  We commemorated that milestone with a 10-day sale in September.
Looking forward, 2018 is my 30th anniversary at Tele Vue.  Though I started inspecting projection television lenses in my parents’ living room and stuffing envelopes with literature in the late ’70s, it wasn’t until April 1st, 1988 that I joined Tele Vue full-time.  We’re still debating whether the joke was on me or my father! 😉
2018 will also be the 15th anniversary of the introduction of the Tele Vue-NP127 telescope that evolved into the current Tele Vue-NP127is photo/visual and Tele Vue-NP127fli astrograph scopes. It is also the 20th anniversary of the the first Powermate™ amplifier and Tele Vue-85 APO telescope. The Tele Vue-85 has certainly stood the test of time and been continually mechanically updated over its existence to maintain competitiveness with the finest small APO scopes on the market.
Tele Vue TV-85 (85mm, f/7, OTA length: 19″/48cm) APO refractor evolution. Top: original-style with single tension/lock screw and one-speed focus. Bottom: current model with multiple-tension/lock screws and 10:1 dual-speed focus.

I’ll be doing the first telescope show of the year at European AstroFest, February 9 & 10, at  Kensington Conference and Events Centre, London, UK. Please stop by the Widescreen Centre stand to speak with me about your observing kit or just say “hi.”

I’d like to close by thanking the many new subscribers to this blog and I invite you all to stay subscribed for sale announcements, events, advice, and information.

 Wishing you all Clear Skies in 2018!
Tele Vue Optics, Inc.
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