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Green Astronomy Laser Pointers

By Edited Feb 9, 2016 0 0

There are many types of lasers today, with green astronomy laser pointers being one of the types used for astronomy.  There are good acceptable uses for lasers, and there are some hazardous uses of these tools.

History of Lasers

Lasers were first theorized about by Albert Einstein in 1917, and many others contributed to the theories about amplifying light in a directed way.  The maser, similar to the laser, but using microwave radiation, was developed in 1953.  In 1957, calling it an “optical maser”, a group at Bell labs invented and patented a laser.

Today the scientific community has made significant strides in the area of lasers, and they have become common everyday items.  Lasers were first used in barcode scanners, those checkout devices at the grocery store.  The laserdisc player came in 1978, but was ultimately replaced by the compact disc player, with uses a laser to read the compact disc.

Astronomy - Green Laser Uses

Astronomy laser pointers have several uses, some of which are used only by professional astronomers and some which are useful for the hobbyist.

Laser Astronomy is a field all to itself.  Adaptive optics refers to the science of improving a viewing system by measuring the distortions of an incoming view and modifying the picture or the mirror viewing the picture to get a better image.  The laser is used to assist in measuring the distortions.  Lasers have also been used to bounce off of the moon and measure the distance.

Telrad Finder Sight
Lasers are now used in light shows, in everything from rock concerts to simulated fireworks.  Planetarium star shows are now done with lasers, enabling a much enhanced capability than the old systems.  

Lasers are used in almost any type of class today, replacing the old fashioned three foot pointer or yard stick.  In astronomy class, which is often done in the dark, the green laser pointer is much more useful than a wooden stick.  More powerful lasers can also be used outside the classroom when viewing the sky directly, as the green laser pointer is viewable when pointing it into the sky.

The laser pointer can even be attached right to a telescope itself to assist in viewing the stars.  This

Orion SkyLine Deluxe Green Laser Pointer & Telescope Bracket
 makes the pointing of the telescope in the right direction much easier to accomplish, and helps, if in groups, to coordinate views. 

Care must be taken to avoid any planes flying overhead, as the light from more powerful lasers can be harmful to the eyes and even lower power lasers can be temporarily blinding and, at a minimum, distracting.  This has become such a problem that there are penalties for pointing the lasers at aircraft.

Buying Green Astronomy Laser Pointers

Amazon sells a variety of green astronomy laser pointers, some of which can be used in your hand to point at the sky and some are made for mounting on your telescope.  Lasers usually come in 

5mw 532nm Astronomy Powerful Green Laser Pointer - Silver
green and red, but green is typically used for astronomy purposes, as the color green is the most easily visible to the human eye

As you can imagine, there are not a lot of buyers of astronomy lasers on Amazon, and the models change like everything else, so for the current choices listed for sale there might not be a lot of reviews.  Just look for a company with a good rating that is selling an astronomy green laser, and you probably will not have a problem finding a good green astronomy laser pointer.

The use of green astronomy laser pointers can much enhance a lecture or a night of star viewing, so check out this add-on and considering buying one to use in your career or hobby.



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