Re: Remote AP observatory recommendations

Gregg Ruppel

Hi Chris:

I have attached a couple of PDFs relating to my experience AND YOUR HELP
automating a ProDome 10.  Please feel free to use any of the text or
pics (I probably have higher res pictures somewhere). I have since
retired to Tucson; I donated my dome to the local astronomy club in St.
Louis and sold the interfaces you built on CN.  Your book sounds like a
great idea and I'm looking forward to it.  I currently share a roll-off
roof observatory at Dark Sky New Mexico with 2 colleagues.

Clear skies,

visit my astrophotography site:

On 7/27/2018 8:02 PM, 'Christopher Erickson' [ap-gto] wrote:

I have a lot of pictures of the insides and outsides of professional
observatories but I would like to include more pictures and "lessons
learned" stories from amateurs.
There won't be any money involved but you will receive full credit for
any of your pictures and/or stories that I end up using in the book.
summitkinetics at gmail dot com
christopher.k.erickson at gmail dot com
-Christopher Erickson
Observatory engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738 <>

*From:* []
*Sent:* Thursday, July 26, 2018 5:37 AM
*Subject:* Re: [ap-gto] Remote AP observatory recommendations

Can't wait to see that!


-----Original Message-----
From: 'Christopher Erickson' [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto <>
Sent: Thu, Jul 26, 2018 2:35 am
Subject: RE: [ap-gto] Remote AP observatory recommendations

Boy, there is so much to say and so much information to provide!
A person could write a book about everything someone should know about
designing, building, maintaining and automating reliable and effective
In fact someone is!
I am hoping to have it ready for publication next year.
22 chapters so far...
-Christopher Erickson
Observatory engineer
Summit Kinetics
Waikoloa, HI 96738 <>

*From:* <>
[ <>]
*Sent:* Saturday, July 21, 2018 1:36 PM
*To:* <>
*Subject:* [ap-gto] Remote AP observatory recommendations

I have an AP1200GTO with CP4 using APCC Pro.   I am moving my scope to
a remote dark sky and am looking for a couple of recommendations to
help minimize having to drive to the site to correct user errors.  
First is a PC connected digital inclinometer to reset my park position
in case I screw it up.   I will have a camera to get it close, but was
thinking of getting a more accurate option.    Second,  power outage
backups; as I understand iit if the mount loses power , it remember
the location prior to power outage and will remember its location when
power is restored but not start a backup I can set the
horizon and meridian limits as a further backup in case tracking does
continue.   I have a UPS that will provide power for a short time if
main power fails.    It would nice if the system would notice it was
on battery and would begin a shutdown sequence.  Currently the UPS
sends me an email if on battery.    That works if I am on computer
,but if I have gone to bed, it won’ do any good..   I assume I would
need some sort of high level script that monitors systems and works
with mount and other components to change operations if needed.   Is
there such a thing and can I even on the fly to change APCC with a
 script.  APCC manual briefing discusses “Terminal”, But doesn’t
really talk about what it can do.  Last is mount losing connection to
PC ports, looks like this is covered in APCC deadman timers, I assume
and it is really that simple. Any recommendations to those whom have
done the truly remote observatory in areas would be appreciated.
Thanks dave


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