NAOJ Telescope kit

A new telescope developed by NAOJ.

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What is the NAOJ Telescope kit?

The NAOJ Telescope kit is a built-it-yourself, compact, and reasonably-priced astronomical telescope designed to be used in the “One Family, One Telescope” and “One School, One Telescope” project.

Every step of the development of this telescope was supervised by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ).


Photo: Features

Developed by NAOJ

NAOJ developed the NAOJ Telescope kit for high performance and low cost, permitting its use in educational settings. Users can observe the phases of Venus and the rings of Saturn, both difficult observations with prior collapsible, compact telescopes.

Photo: Features

An astronomical telescope that is lightweight, compact, and inexpensive, but still offers great performance

We thoroughly studied lenses, focal lengths, sizes, and tube materials, optimizing performance and cost while permitting detailed observations of the planets. We have succeeded in creating an astronomical telescope with cost-performance optimized for educating beginners.

You can easily observe the Moon and planets.

Usage Examples

Product Information

Photo: NAOJ Telescope kit

NAOJ Telescope kit

5,280 yen (tax included)


Objective lensDiameter 50 mm / focal length 399 mm / two achromatic lenses
Magnification16x and 66x (replaceable eyepieces)
Full length450 mm (about 490 mm at maximum extension)
Maximum diameter67 mm (excluding protrusions)
WeightApprox. 265 g
Eye pieces25 mm (Huygens type) / 6 mm (Plössl type)
Tripod not included.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it necessary to mount the telescope on a tripod during use?

Yes, it is. Please use a commercially available tripod for photography or video recording. We recommend a heavy, solidly-built tripod. If it is too light, the telescope may fail to perform adequately.

Why did NAOJ develop this telescope for general users?

This project was done in response to a request by the International Astronomical Union (IAU), following the International Year of Astronomy 2009 (IYA2009), for the availability of 10-dollar telescopes that could be distributed in developing nations. Off-the-shelf collapsible telescope kits were used for 10 years, but NAOJ decided to develop and sell its own telescope kit to encourage its distribution overseas and use in educational settings.


For residents in Japan

Online store

Website: Vixen Online Store

Vixen Online Store


Go to the Vixen Online Store website (Japanese Language Only)


Photo: UT-Coop

The University of Tokyo Student Coop Astronomy Shop

Location: NAOJ Mitaka Campus (2-21-1, Osawa, Mitaka City, Tokyo)
Open: 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on weekdays

Bulk purchases (10 units or more)

Photo: 10 units or more

Natural Science Advertisement and Outreach Agency

The agency has set a discounted price for the bulk purchase of 10 or more kits. Please take advantage of this offer if you wish to purchase kits for use in schools or at special events.

Price list and how to order (Japanese Language Only)

Go to the Natural Science Advertisement and Outreach Agency website

For residents outside Japan


Website: Vixen Information desk

Vixen website

Please contact Vixen information desk.


Go to the Vixen website


Phone (Inquiry number of the NAOJ)


Inquiries are accepted from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. from Monday to Friday (Closed on Saturdays, holidays, and from December 28 to January 4).
Please tell the operator that you are calling about the NAOJ Telescope kit.

e-mail address

Please enter “@” in place of “_@_”.

IAU Office for Astronomy Outreach
International Astronomical Union (IAU)

The development of the NAOJ Telescope kit was made possible thanks to support by the International Astronomical Union (IAU) and crowdfunding from the Society to Give Children Astronomical Telescope, which was led by the 30th President of the IAU, Norio Kaifu, who passed away in April 2019.

The development and worldwide distribution of the telescope kit is supported by NAOJ, IAU, and IAU Office of Astronomy Outreach (OAO).