Meet the GODO Telescopes: 8” Moonraker Victorian Refractor
Written in collaboration with Claire Gibson & Hailey Osborn, Lowell Educators
Each of the Giovale Open Deck Observatory (GODO)’s six state-of-the-art telescopes were hand-selected to provide a breathtaking stargazing experience that is unrivaled by any other public observatory in the continental United States. In this blog series, we’ll be taking a deep dive into what makes each of the GODO telescopes the best of their kind.
Beauty and Brains
The 8” Moonraker Victorian Refractor is a stunning sight by day, and a treat to look through at night. A blend of Victorian styling and modern technology, its red and chrome Steampunk design echoes that of our 1896 24” Clark Refractor. Though its vivid coloring and pleasing design often make it a favorite among visitors, this telescope was built to offer much more than good looks.
Like the Clark, the Moonraker uses a superb two-lens design that results in outstanding, high-powered views of celestial objects. Planets like Mars, Jupiter and Saturn can be seen in crisp detail and color. Distant globular star clusters are resolved to their cores, giving them a three-dimensional effect. True to its name, the Moonraker is also an ideal instrument for observing the surface of the Moon, down to the structure of its craters.
The telescope is mounted on an articulating pier, which allows the height to be easily and quickly adjusted to allow comfortable viewing for all guests.
About the Manufacturer: Moonraker Telescopes
Moonraker Telescopes was founded by lifelong astronomy enthusiast Mark Turner in 2012. Today, the company works with international film, media, and publishing companies to create unique working telescopes and tripods. One of Moonraker’s telescopes appeared in Netflix’s Altered Carbon series (2018). If their presence in television in film wasn’t impressive enough, Moonraker also created a custom personal telescope for actor Tom Cruise that is plated in gold.
Each Moonraker telescope is built in-house in Middlesex, England. Every step in the design and manufacturing processes is completed by hand, giving the completed telescope a unique design, look, and quality.
Moonraker was the first telescope manufacturing company to use polished metal finishes, like gold and brass. Aesthetics are taken into account in every aspect of the telescope, including in its lens cap — the lip of the cap is given a contrasting color to that of the telescope itself, perfectly finishing off its design.
Each telescope is created differently in order to reflect the unique interest of the astronomer or observatory. The company certainly does not believe in a “one fits all” mentality!
More from the Blog
- From The Farm To The Stars: We Talk About Clyde TombaughA telescope made out of farming equipment? Discovering Pluto? In this episode of Star Stuff, Hailey sits down with Lowell historian Kevin Schindler to talk about the man who discovered Pluto, Clyde Tombaugh.
- Nicole Stott Headlines I Heart Pluto FestivalAs Lowell Observatory Director Jeff Hall has explained, the mission of Lowell Observatory can be distilled down to this – communicating science. Our scientists explore the universe and communicate their findings to colleagues around the world, while our educators share the excitement of this science with the public. A key ingredient of this effort is […]
- The 2023 I Heart Pluto FestivalCelebrating the 93rd Anniversary of Pluto’s Discovery In less than a month, we will be celebrating the 3rd annual I Heart Pluto Festival! This three-day celebration will have food, drinks, presentations, live music, and more. Pluto lovers of all ages are sure to have a blast as we look back on the groundbreaking discovery that […]
- Beyond The Event Horizon: We Talk About Black HolesWormholes? Time travel? Alternate universes? In this episode of Star Stuff, Cody and Hailey talk about black holes, the different types of black holes, and the bizarre implications of their existence.
- Celestial Events in 2023Happy New Year from all of us here at Lowell Observatory. If you’re wondering what the new year will bring to the night skies, look no further than this Celestial Event Calendar! January January 3: Quadrantids Meteor Shower January 22: Conjunction of Venus and Saturn March March 1: Conjunction of Venus and Jupiter March 20: […]