Sharpstar Optics has released the new ASKAR FMA180 triplet air-spaced APO refractor. The new telescope includes two pieces of ED (extra-low dispersion) glass, providing excellent correction of chromatic aberration. The high-quality optics producing a flat image with striking clarity and performs well for both astrophotography and astronomy observation.
As the company points out in its description of the telescope, “For traditional astrophotography, it is difficult to achieve a focal length of less than 200MM with many telescopes. The primary choice in this range is the ordinary camera lens. However, the camera lens is not optimized for astrophotography, so the result is not satisfactory. The FMA180 solves this problem offering superior optical performance.
In addition to astrophotography and observing, the FMA180 is also suitable as a high-performance finder-guider. The overall tube length is 145mm and the FMA180 tips the scales at a just 395g (14oz).
The assembled product includes a pair of tube rings and a finderscope bracket, which can be easily attached to a finder base. The finder bracket can be divided into two parts. The dovetail plate can be used alone and it also can be connected to a tripod with standard camera thread. The Arca-Swiss standard dovetail rail can be connected to the corresponding plate and it can also attach to the VIXEN style dovetail providing connectivity for both photographic and observational use.
ASKAR FMA180 Photographic Mode Setup:
1) Main tube + focuser + reducer + reducer connection adapter – 180mm F4.5 sextuplet APO flat field correction astrograph lens (recommended photographic mode).
2) Main tube + focuser + extension tube 1 + extension tube 2 – 220mm F5.5 triplet APO lens.
ASKAR FMA180 Observation Mode Setup:
1) Main tube + focuser + extension tube 1 + 1.25″ adapter – It can be combined with 1.25″ star diagonal and eyepiece for standard observation or finderscope mode.
2) Main tube + focuser + extension tube 1 + extension tube 2 – It can be combined with 1.25″ eyepiece for visual observation or finderscope mode.
ASKAR FMA180 features include:
– Aperture: 40mm
– Focal Length: Objective Lens (220mm); Plus Reducer (180mm)
– Focal Ration: Objective Lens (f5.5); Plus Reducer (f4.5)
– Objective Type: Triplet Dual ED Air-Spaced APO (O5bjective Lens); Sextuplet Refractor for Full-Frame Astrophotography (With Reducer)
– Overall Length: 145mm (Photographic Mode with Focal Reducer); 160mm (Observation Mode Without Star Diagonal)
– Weight: 395g (14oz)
– Back-End Adapter: M42x0.75 (Photographic Mode); 1.25” Adapter (Observation Mode)
– Package Includes: FMA180 Body, Two Tube Rings, Finder Scope Bracket, Two Extension Tubes, 1.25” Adapter, Allen Wrench, Owner’s Manual.
Sharpstar Optics’s also has introduced a new line of ASKAR FRA telescopes which offer what the company calls a “Flatfield Refractive Astrograph” which offers a Petzval design. The first telescope in the FRA line is the f/5.6 ASKAR FRA 400 which offers a 400mm focal length, 72mm aperture, 140mm of backfocus and supports a 44mm full frame image circle.
You can learn more here.