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ARKYD: A Space Telescope for Everyone

by Kenny Hoeschen
$10-$10,000   Pledge

The folks at Planetary Resources (who are also making plans to mine asteroids) would like to build the world’s first crowd-funded space telescope to be controlled by ordinary people, namely: you. You can even direct your telescope time to non-profit science centers and universities for use in your communities.

Arkyd Space Telescope Specs:

  • Primary Optic: 200 mm aperture, f/4 primary optic
  • Resolving capability: ~ 1 arcsecond
  • Detection capability: to visual magnitude 19
  • 5 MP+ image sensor
  • Wavelength range: 200 nm to 1100 nm
  • Available filters: UV bandpass (< 300 nm), B, V, R, OIII, Hα, 1 μm bandpass, Luminence (Clear)
  • Active image stabilization

For a pledge of just $25, the team will display your picture in space and then take a “selfie” of your picture with Earth in the background. A pledge of $200 allows you to control the telescope and point it at any celestial object (other than the Sun).

As of this writing, the project has raised nearly $400,000 of its $1 million goal. The Kickstarter funding ends on June 30, 2013.

The team posted a video update (inserted below) of their asteroid mining efforts and the ARKYD telescope and were joined by Brent Spiner (Lieutenant Commander Data).

 

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