Saturn is one of the most beautiful planets in our solar system.
It’s so beautiful that the universe decided to put a ring on it. A couple in fact.
The rings are made up of particles from space: ice, rock, obliterated moons.
The rings are two separate rings. One is about 3,000 miles wide and the other is about 1,500 miles across.
They’re both made up of countless tiny pieces of rock and ice.
Saturn has been studied for years by scientists who have discovered many things about this planet.
For example, they’ve found that there are storms on the surface of the planet.
These storms can be seen as dark spots on the planet’s face.
Scientists also know that winds are blowing at hundreds of miles per hour.
But it’s all very well and good talking about Saturn.
If you have a telescope then you could be lucky enough to see it provided you’ve got the right settings and spec.
What Power Telescope Do I Need To See Saturn?
You need a power telescope with an aperture of 20 inches or more.
This will allow you to see the rings clearly. You’ll need to look through a lens that’s around 50mm (2 inches) in diameter.
Aperture refers to the size of the hole in your eyepiece. Smaller holes let light pass through but reduce the amount of detail you can see.
Bigger holes mean less light gets through but give you more detail. Telescopes with larger apertures are usually called “big” telescopes.
Telescope Magnification To See Saturn
Telescopes can magnify very distant objects, making them appear bigger than they are.
If you were looking at Saturn from Earth, you would need a telescope with a magnification of 25x.
But if you were looking at it from the Moon, you would only need a 10x telescope.
So if you want to see Saturn, you should get yourself a telescope with a magnification of or higher than 25x.
At 25x magnification, even the smallest telescope should be able to see Saturn and its rings as clearly separate structures.
If you don’t believe me, try looking at Saturn with a 25x telescope.
It might take a little while to find Saturn and its rings because they’re so faint. But once you’ve spotted them, you’ll realize just how clear they are.
When Can I See Saturn?
It depends on where you live. Saturn is located almost exactly halfway between the Sun and the Earth.
That means that it takes us about half a year to travel towards it.
And when we do reach it, we stay there for another half-year.
That means that if you live somewhere near the equator, you might not be able to see Saturn until late August next year.
But if you live further north, you may be able to see it sooner.
Saturn’s Orbit Around The Sun
The orbit of Saturn around the sun is slightly elliptical. That means that it travels closer to the sun in one part of its orbit and farther away in another.
Saturn is closest to the sun during midwinter. By early summer, it’s furthest away.
When it reaches its farthest point from the sun, it’s actually moving faster than the Earth.
And this means that Saturn is sometimes visible earlier than usual. For example, if you live in Australia, you might be able to spot Saturn in May.
But if you live in England, you won’t be able to see it until June.
Best Telescope To See Saturn With
If you’re planning to buy a new telescope, you should consider what type of view you want to achieve.
There are two main types of lenses: wide-field and deep sky.
Wide Field View
With a wide field view, you’ll be able to see everything in the night sky.
But you won’t be able to see any individual stars. Instead, you’ll see lots of bright lights scattered across the sky.
You can use a wide-field view to observe the planets and their moons.
For example, if you want to see Jupiter and its moons, you could use a wide field scope.
Deep Sky View
A deep sky view allows you to see individual stars. If you want to study the stars in detail, you’ll need a deep-sky scope.
There are many different kinds of telescopes available.
Each has a different focal length. This means that each will give you a different view of the same area of sky.
For example, an 8 inch Dobsonian telescope will give you a wider view than a 6-inch reflector.
A 12-inch reflector will give you a much deeper view than a 4-inch refractor.
After considering the best type of lens to see Saturn with, you should also consider what kind of telescope.
There are 4 main types of telescopes, refractor, reflector, Dobsonian, and Maksutov-Cassegrain
Refractor telescopes are made up of glass lenses. They’re usually very large. You can get ones as big as 40 inches!
Refractors have been used since the 1800s. They were originally designed to look at faraway objects like nebulae.
But they soon became popular for observing the Moon and planets.
They’re still widely used today. Many people prefer them over other types of telescopes because they’re easy to maintain and give a very crisp, clear image.
Refractors come in 2 basic designs. Either they have a single objective lens or they have a doublet (2 lenses).
Doublets allow you to focus both images onto your eyepiece.
A reflector telescope is similar to a refractor telescope. It uses mirrors instead of lenses.
Like refractors, reflectors are often very large. Some of the biggest models are more than 100 inches long!
Reflectors are often slightly cheaper than refractors, and they’re considered by most to be easier to use too.
They collect a lot of light, offering up a bright image, even if they’re battling against a spot of light pollution; however, they don’t have the same acuity as refractors.
A Dobsonian telescope is a hybrid between a refractor and a reflector. It combines the strengths of both types of telescopes.
It has a large mirror on top which reflects sunlight down into the tube.
Inside the tube, there’s a small objective lens. This focuses on the image from the mirror. The tube itself is held by a sturdy mount.
Maksutov Cassegrain Telescope
A Maksutov-Cassegrain telescope is one of the most complex types of telescope ever invented.
It was named after its inventors Nikolai Nikolaevich Maksutov and Pavel Ivanovich Cassegrain.
Maksutovsky-Cassegrains consist of 3 parts. First, there’s a primary mirror. Next, there’s a secondary mirror. Finally, there’s an eyepiece.
When light hits the primary mirror, it bounces off the secondary mirror. Then it comes back through the eyepiece.
The best telescope out of the four to see Saturn with is the Dobsonian. It gives you a wide field of view.
That means you’ll be able to see everything in the rings.
You can use this telescope to observe the moons of Saturn. Or even Jupiter and Mars.
If you want to see Saturn’s rings, you need a telescope that’s at least 10 inches in diameter.
Anything smaller won’t show the entire ring system. And always use a 25x zoom!
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