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Gadget Freak Case #222: Warming Up the Telescope

Eric Chesak created a heating pad system to keep his telescope at a uniform temperature throughout his deep-space photography sessions.

As with many Gadget Freak entries, this one was developed out of necessity.

Eric Chesak takes deep-space photographs. The process can require 10 to 12 hours of focus on the object being photographed. Over that period, nighttime temperatures can swing enough to throw an aluminum telescope out of focus. The astrophotography industry has gadgets designed to compensate with complicated focus alternations. Or you can go outside and refocus the telescope every 30 minutes.

Chesak had a better idea. He decided to get to the source of the problem. He created a heating pad system to keep the telescope at a uniform temperature throughout the process.

Click the image below for a slideshow on Eric Chesak's telescope thermal focus management system.

Eric Chesak's telescope thermal focus management system is made up of three main elements: the heater, the power and temperature control system, and the thermocouple for temperature feedback.

Do you have a Gadget Freak project you would like the world to see? Send a brief description of your gadget and a photo to Senior Editor Rob Spiegel.

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The editors of Design News have handpicked your favorite Gadget Freak cases from over the years, bringing them together in a dynamic digital edition, complete with videos, which you can view here.

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