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Homework Help: Simple Optic Resolution Problem/ Rayleigh's Criterion

  1. Nov 15, 2012 #1
    1. The problem statement, all variables and given/known data

    Suppose you wanted to be able to see astronauts on the moon. What is the smallest diameter of the objective lens required to resolve a 0.68 m object on the moon?
    2. Relevant equations

    I was told to use Rayleigh's Criterion but i do not see how to relate the equation
    θmin = 1.22λ/D where theta is the minimum resolvable angle, lambda is the wavelength and D is diameter?

    3. The attempt at a solution

    Didn't even know where to start, any help would be greatly appreciated! thanks
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 15, 2012 #2


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    How far away is the moon? What angle would a 0.68m wide object on the moon subtend at the telescope on Earth? What wavelength would be appropriate?
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