A 1-inch telescope can show Jupiter's four largest moons, the planet's South Equatorial Belt and hint at the existence of a North Equatorial Belt:
A 1-inch telescope can show that Saturn is different and has "ears", or "handles", or a ring, or whatever:
A 1-inch telescope can show that Venus undergoes phases along with corresponding changes in its apparent diameter:
Thanks for the pictures, Sketcher. Clearly, I agree with you. That being so, please do not disparage the blind. We have a topic here about Astronomy for the Blind. They use sound to transduce the data, just like in Carl Sagan's science fiction story, Contact.
The late Jean Texereau (1919-2014) was not just some guy with an opinion.
Clearly, I disagree that "science" cannot be done with less than 150 mm or 1500 mm or whatever.
Our local club is having Tom Field (Field Tested Systems https://www.fieldtestedsystems.com) speak (via Zoom) on spectroscopy. He said to me via email that perhaps 80% of the work in astronomy is done with spectroscopy. On that basis, why bother with optical observation at all? The answer is that when we engage as scientists, it is the method, not the tools, that defines what we do. Publishing your work is the last step. The discovery of truth is a personal quest. Tonight, I split eta Cassiopeia for the first time with my 102 mm refractor. I noted the time and the instrumentation and sketched my observation. I verified for myself what I read in an authoritative publication. To me, that is the practice of science.
Edited by mikemarotta, 19 November 2020 - 12:40 AM.