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SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Newton's telescope. Second reflecting telescope designed and built by English astronomer Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727) in 1671. Newton invented the reflecting telescope in 1668 because he thought that it was impossible to produce a telescope lens that did not produce colour distortions (chromatic aberration). The telescope worked by focusing light using a parabolic mirror. This reflected light back up the 30-centimetre long tube of the telescope to another mirror which reflected it sideways through an eyepiece. This telescope was demonstrated by Newton at a 1672 meeting of the Royal Society, which chose this occasion to elect him into their membership.
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