Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A Short Night

Last night was probably the shortest successful night of imaging I've ever had.

I went to a local observing site before sunset, set up my gear, and was heading back downhill by 8:15pm. I've never done that before!

My main reason for heading up the hill was to test a new (for me) interface between my `field computer' (an Asus `eee PC' 900 ha, which runs on straight 12V DC), and my mount.  I had spent the previous day fighting software and getting a USB-Serial adapter to work.

To my utter astonishment, my gear tests worked! I was able to acquire an image, plate-solve it within MaximDL, and overlay it onto Maxim's star map. That much I'd already managed to do at home. In the field, I was able to establish a link between my netbook and my mount (an Orion `Sirius'), and slew my `scope by clicking on the star map. Amazing! I'd seen my friend from Cilice do this with his AP900 mount, and I was blown away. Having it work for me last night was great. This will make my focusing workflow a lot easier, since I'll be able to go back-and-forth between a DSO and a bright focusing star much more easily.

No comments:

Post a Comment