Night-vision astronomy can massively improve the visual views of many deep-sky objects. No longer do you have to hunt around for ‘faint fuzzies’ – a small, military-grade night-vision eyepiece can transform your enjoyment of nebulae, globular clusters and galaxies, even from the light-polluted back-gardens of city dwellers. From a dark site the views through a night-vision eyepiece are incredible, akin to looking at photographs of deep-sky objects.
The OVNI-M FOM 2600 night-vision eyepiece with a 75mm lens attached for 3× magnification. Image: Gavin Orpin.
It’s not just keen amateurs whose passion for astronomy has been increased by night-vision technology. Earlier this year, the founder of TeleVue, Al Nagler, explained how night vision gives an 85mm refractor the reach of a 250mm telescope.
Now, with the release of the OVNI-M, designed specifically for astronomy by French company OVNI Night Vision, night-vision astronomy has become much more accessible. Unfortunately, though, the price remains high – up to 10,999 euros.
My existing night-vision eyepiece, a Luxembourg-made PVS-14, is extremely powerful, but it lacks a detachable front lens. This restricts observing to ‘afocal’ mode, in conjunction with a standard glass eyepiece. Afocal night vision works well, but it results in a long ...