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New Main: Collimators

A telescope collimator is a device used to align the optical components of a telescope to ensure that the light passing through it is focused precisely. The collimation process involves adjusting the mirrors or lenses within the telescope to ensure that the light path is properly aligned and focused.

Collimation is particularly important for reflecting telescopes, which use mirrors to reflect and focus light, as opposed to refracting telescopes, which use lenses. Over time, the mirrors in a reflecting telescope can shift slightly out of alignment, resulting in a loss of image quality and clarity. Collimation helps to correct these alignment issues and restore the telescope's performance.

A collimator typically consists of a small eyepiece or camera that is placed at the focus of the telescope, along with an adjustable target that is placed at a distance from the telescope. By adjusting the mirrors or lenses to align the image of the target with the actual target itself, the telescope can be collimated and brought back into proper alignment.