Tackling the Dew!

Dew, or condensation that forms on our telescopes can be quite a headache! It causes s a reduction in the amount of stars you see and a progressive loss of detail through the eyepiece. Sometimes it creeps up on you, but soon enough you will notice the layer of misty water on your telescope glass.  So what can you do about it?  Well if your at home and have access to the mains then a gentle blast with a hair dryer will help, but if not some preventative action is needed.  

The first line of defence is to fit a dew shield or lens shade. This won't stop dew altogether, but it will buy you more time! In addition it also prevents stray light entering your telescope from an angle, which is useful if a neighbour turns on a light or if you have a street light in the wrong spot!

The second and most effective countermeasure is applying some controlled heat. Using the same principle as a heated windscreen on a car you can fit dew heaters to your telescope.  This comes in the form of straps or can also be built into a lens shield itself.  Its important to note that these heaters will also need to be used with form of controller. The job of the controller is to regulate the heat and to use as little power from you battery pack as possible! Good controllers also have several channels so that you can combine multiple heaters to heat different parts of your set up at the same time. 
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