New, improved Dragonfly telescope is a galactic gas detector
The Dragonfly telescope is undergoing a metamorphosis.
For the past decade, the Dragonfly Telephoto Array — designed by Yale’s Pieter van Dokkum and the University of Toronto’s Roberto Abraham and located in New Mexico — has conducted groundbreaking science by detecting faint starlight within dimly lit parts of the night sky. The telescope uses clusters of telephoto lenses to create images, much the way a dragonfly’s eyes gather visual data.
Now Dragonfly is setting its sights on extragalactic gas.
With the help of a special filter mounted in front of each lens, the Dragonfly telescope is able to block most of the light emitted by stars — leaving just the faint glow of light-emitting, ionized gas. The Dragonfly team built a “pathfinder” version of the new telescope, with three lenses instead of the original Dragonfly’s 48 lenses, as a proof-of-concept device.
To read the full article by Jim Shelton, visit the YaleNews link below: