Product Update: Now includes a fitted hard carrying case for all included items
The New Baader Planetarium 2" Cool-Caramic Safety Herschel Prism delivers the finest white-light solar views obtainable, and is the only white light filter that we have found to noticeably exceed the performance of Baader AstroSolar Film. The Herschel wedge prism provides safe full-aperture solar views without absolutely no image degradation. Views are noticeably superior in resolution and contrast to even the very finest and most expensive glass objective solar filters and films. The amount of Sunspot detail and surface granulation will surprise even the most experienced solar observer. Penumbra resolve into a staggering range of contrasts and fine wispy details. The solar disc is set against a jet-black sky, like observing the full moon at night! With this Herschel Wedge Prism, it becomes obvious that the lack of detail and contrast experienced with most other white-light filters was not so much due to the atmospheric seeing as you had thought. A further benefit is the true unfiltered nature of the spectrum passed by the filter. Unlike all objective solar filters, the Baader Herschel Wedge does not selectively filter any of the visual wavelengths. This provides a true white-light view, and permits the use of additional eyepiece filters to selectively study any bands desired, without the compounding effects of a pre-filter.
The NEW Baader 2" Cool-Caramic Safety Herschel Prism is the finest solar wedge ever produced for amateur use. It is the culmination of Baader's many years of experience in the design and production of Herschel Wedges. Utilizing a precision 2" ultra-smooth wedge prism and optimized optical design for stray light elimination, the Baader Safety Herschel Wedge maximizes image contrast and sharpness. The large first-surface prism has high surface quality and smoothness over its entire surface, which will not break down at magnifications well over 100x, permitting full-disc photography and imaging with no resolution or contrast loss across the full field. Efficient internal baffling and prism rear-face multicoatings further reduce scatter and maximize contrast.
As supplied, a special precision polished and coated Baader ND=3.0 filter is permanently pre-installed within the wedge housing (it MUST be present for any and all visual observation). This critical safety feature ensures that the ND filter will always be present, with no chance of accidentally viewing the unfiltered light as with some other herschel wedges. The genuine Baader ND filters have been designed and produced specifically for Herschel usage, and are the only ND filters ever to be produced with both surfaces fine optically polished and anti-reflection multicoated. These additional steps provide the highest image quality across the entire field, preventing any image breakdown and scattered light which are inherent in standard ND filters.
The modular design of the Baader Herschel Wedge incorporates a removable 2" nosepiece and Baader 2" Clicklock Eyepiece Clamp. The threaded machined aluminum body permits attachment of a full range of Baader accessories, as well as for close-coupling of cameras and Baader binoviewers. A full system chart can be found by clicking this More Info link.
This latest version incorporates an innovative internal Light Trap and Ceramic Tile backplate developed by Baader Planetarium. This development takes the Herschel Wedge into the 21st Century, by rendering the output energy cool and diffused, while completely sealing the prism body! In all other herschel designs, the waste energy is simply deflected out of the rear face of the prism by an angled mirror, also leaving openings for accidental or prying fingers to discover. Thanks to Baader Planetarium, this concern has now been completely removed. In place of the typical output mirror is a coated multi-layered perforated steel screen. The bright light and heat energy are harmlessly diffused. The special die-cast magnesium body also conducts away the heat more efficiently than aluminum. The remaining light is passed into a special translucent ceramic back plate.
Integrated Solar Finder. Another unique aspect of the new Cool-Ceramic Safety Herschel Prism is the integrated solar finder. The sun's defocused image can be readily seen projected onto the translucent ceramic backplate, permitting fast and easy aiming.
Each Baader Safety Herschel Wedge also includes a pre-installed 2" Solar Continuum Filter! With the Solar Continuum, the contrast and image stability is further enhanced in all telescopes (APOs as well as Achromats). Users of Achromats will find the Solar Continuum is indispensible, providing an image that rivals the sharpness and contrast of an Apochromat (with the Solar Continuum the image is presented in a deep lime green color). The combination of the Herschel Wedge and Solar Continuum Filter delivers the finest solar views obtainable with any white-light telescope. The Solar Continuum filter may be removed by the user for pure white light views, if desired (but the ND=3.0 must not be removed).
We offer two versions of the Herschel Wedge: The lower priced Version-V (visual) comes with the pre-installed ND=3.0/1:1000 (required for safe viewing), and a pre-installed 2" Solar Continuum Filter. The Version-P (photographic) starts with the Version-V and adds 3 additional Baader ND filters (ND1.8/1:64, ND0.9/1:8, ND0.6/1:4 ). The additional ND filters are handy for further dimming the image by using in place of the Continuum filter for white light viewing, or attaching to eyepieces or a T2-15 Reducer, and are particularly useful for imaging.
Please refer to the More Info page for additional information.
- All of the fine-optically polished genuine Baader ND filters incorporate special anti-reflection multi-coatings, to further eliminate light scatter and ghosting for maximum image contrast. The result is image quality unachievable with any other ND filter.
The Herschel Wedge is only recommended for use with refracting telescopes, NOT Schmidt-Cassegrain, Maksutov, or any other Reflecting Telescopes. This is a professional-quality white light (not H-Alpha) solar filtration system, whose basic design concept has existed for almost as long as the telescope itself. Like glass or mylar film objective solar filters, it is completely safe if used properly and common sense precautions always observed. Please click on the More Info link for additional safety information.
- Similar in length to any 2" diagonal, the Baader Cool-Ceramic Safety Herschel Prism requires more back-focus than a 1.25" accessory. The optical path length of the Herschel is approximately 128mm, as measured from it's front face to the top of the 2" eyepiece holder. Since most 2" eyepieces have their field stops well below the main eyepiece body, most telescopes will need less than 128mm of back focus (in-travel) to accommodate the Herschel. Most telescopes with 2" focusers will have no problem providing this amount of back-focus. However, some telescopes provide limited back-focus that may require a shorter path length for some eyepieces. For these scopes the path length of the Herschel may be reduced to 108mm for 1.25" eyepieces by the attachment of a T2-27 adapter and T2-08 1.25" Clicklock eyepiece clamp.
- Safety Information (pdf file, 722kB)
- Recent full review of the Cool-Ceramic Safety Herschel Prism by Ted Wolfe posted on Cloudy Nights
Images taken with the Herschel Safety Wedge