atmospheric seeing

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atmospheric seeing

in astronomy, sharpness of a telescopic image. Seeing is dependent upon the degree of turbulence in the Earth's atmosphere for a given telescope. Scintillation, the "twinkling" of stars to the unaided eye, is a commonly known result of turbulence in the higher reaches of the atmosphere. Poor seeing in telescopes is more a result of turbulence in the lower atmosphere. This turbulence sets a limit on the features that a telescope can resolve.

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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