Really, Japan has developed a new optics system for the country’s Subaru telescope located on the extinct Mauna Kea volcano in Hawaii. With the system the telescope could identify a quarter some 60 miles away, and will enable astronomers to study objects that have so far been unobservable, such as the detailed structure of faint distant galaxies billions of miles away.
Designed to minimize the blurring effect of the atmosphere on images captured by the ground-based telescope, the device will help the Subaru scope capture images with a resolution 3.5 times clearer than that of the orbiting Hubble space telescope.
To achieve this exceptional resolution, the observatory has developed a laser system that creates an artificial star, called a guide star, which is used to measure the twinkle created by the atmosphere. The new adaptive optics system uses 188 adjustable mirror elements to smooth out light and produce a sharp image.