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Aug 25 '18 at 23:41 comment added Loren Pechtel You seem to be agreeing with me, yet you seem to say I'm wrong.
Aug 25 '18 at 23:30 comment added Mark Olson @Loren Pechtel It definitely does. Look at the VLA or the VLBA or any of the radio-telescope synthetic aperture arrays. They have the resolving power of a dish the side of the Earth, but actually are only a couple dozen 100' dishes. The same thing has been done in the optical regime. Basically, the number of photons collected depends on the area of the dishs, but the resolution depends only on the spacing of the dishes.
Aug 25 '18 at 21:27 comment added Loren Pechtel I believe splitting it into separate collectors doesn't change the collecting area needed.
Aug 25 '18 at 21:24 comment added Mark Olson @Loren Pechtal You may be right, but it's not quite so clear as that. You can get resolution using aperture synthesis (many "small" dishes scattered around a solar-system-sized space) but to get the photons you need a really huge collecting area. I don't know how to work out the collecting area needed to do the synthesis, especially in such a photon-poor situation.
Aug 25 '18 at 21:19 comment added Loren Pechtel Look at Ummdustry's comment--getting enough photons is small compared to getting enough resolution.
Aug 25 '18 at 18:52 history answered Mark Olson CC BY-SA 4.0