Re: Mach2 Unguided testing continues


Ray Gralak
 

Hi Bill,

I have not seen APCC plate solving anything, other than when APPM runs a model or if you specifically ask
APCC to use APPM to solve and RECAL, which prompted my question. I am assuming it does this as APPM
generates the model data, but if there is something I am missing out on I would want to know so I could turn it
on, use it, etc.
APPM is just a data point mapper, collecting where the telescope thinks it is pointed and where it actually pointed, as well as
time, temp, pressure, and humidity. The data is all stored in plain text format.

The actual "magic" of creating pointing and tracking rate models is in APCC Pro, which uses the data in the mapping files to create
said models. This allows gains in tracking and pointing performance over time in new APCC Pro builds without necessarily having you
recollect a set of mapping points.

The declination-arc tracking rate model is a new way of calculating a more precise, dynamic tracking rate, and is similar to what
Roland has been working on in the keypad. It will be available in a future build of APCC Pro along with some other new features.
Right now the primary goal is to squash any remaining bugs found in APCC and the driver.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): https://www.astro-physics.com/apcc-pro
Author of PEMPro V3: https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver

-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Bill Long
Sent: Friday, May 29, 2020 1:23 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

That makes perfect sense. I was asking about this comment Ray made:

I'm interested because APCC has a built-in declination-arc modeling feature. That is, it plate solves along the
same declination at different hour angles and produces a best-fit tracking rate model for each declination it
samples.


I have not seen APCC plate solving anything, other than when APPM runs a model or if you specifically ask
APCC to use APPM to solve and RECAL, which prompted my question. I am assuming it does this as APPM
generates the model data, but if there is something I am missing out on I would want to know so I could turn it
on, use it, etc.

I should also add for the general discussion here, that I have used APPM/APCC modeling and unguided
imaging for a while, and the performance of it has only gotten better and better over time. If folks are on the
fence or are a bit skeptical about its feasibility, I strongly urge you to try it out. I know folks like to hold onto
PHD2 (or whatever guider they use) as some holy grail of good images -- but APCC Pro + APPM does a
remarkable job. With Nebula season upon us, now is an excellent time to get out a nice refractor (GTX,
TEC140, etc) and get to unguided imaging with these excellent tools we have at our disposal.

The results you get with it, will prompt serious consideration on what performance you can get unguided with
mirror optics as well, which is also quite good in my experience, although I only use Corrected DK and RC
mirror scopes. YMMV on SCT's. Newts were also quite good when I was still using the ONTC 10" one.

-Bill

________________________________

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of uncarollo2 <chris1011@aol.com> via
groups.io <chris1011=aol.com@groups.io>
Sent: Friday, May 29, 2020 1:05 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

All objects will move across the sky in an arc from east to west along a constant Declination value. It's not a
feature of a mount, rather it's a feature of the way objects move across the sky. The motion along this arc is not
constant, rather is varies by tiny amounts both in RA and Dec due to a number of items. if you can measure
accurately enough where the object will be at any time during it's motion across the sky, you can adjust the
driving speed of the RA and Dec axes to precisely match that of the object. And thus you can take time
exposures along the path without having the object blurred due to drift error.


Rolando




-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long <bill@outlook.com>
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Sent: Fri, May 29, 2020 2:44 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues


Does this DEC Arc feature just happen naturally in the process of generating a model?

________________________________

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Ray Gralak <groups3@gralak.com>
Sent: Friday, May 29, 2020 6:31 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

It isn't set on the first image, it sets on the second one, so a short ~20 sec image is made first, then another
~20 sec image is made, and the initial tracking corrections are then applied on the third science image at the
normal exposure you decide.
Okay, that's what I understood from what Craig has said previously.

But I think most imagers want longer exposures than 20 seconds. How would this work if a user wants to do 10
minute exposures?
Without an initial correction there might be enough star trailing in a 10-minute image that plate solves would fail
and no images
would ever get collected.

I'm interested because APCC has a built-in declination-arc modeling feature. That is, it plate solves along the
same declination at
different hour angles and produces a best-fit tracking rate model for each declination it samples. APCC
interpolates rates between
individual declination arcs to produce a really accurate tracking rate model throughout the sky and falls back to
the regular
all-sky tracking rate model if the user goes out of the area of the sky where there were no declination arcs to
rely on. I showed
this feature to a number of people at AIC last November.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center):
https://nam12.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.astro-physics.com%2Fapcc-
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-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Steven Steven
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2020 10:17 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

It isn't set on the first image, it sets on the second one, so a short ~20 sec image is made first, then another
~20 sec image is made, and the initial tracking corrections are then applied on the third science image at the
normal exposure you decide. Each subsequent exposure is calculated according to the tracking information
gained from the previous image, and each one adjusts the motor speed as required to keep within the limits
that you configure. Once the initial tracking rate is set, subsequent corrections are fine adjustments made by
the software. In order not to chase the seeing conditions, you can configure AT to make adjustments every
nth
image, as described in the User Guide (which is in abbreviated form at the moment, but more than adequate
for our purposes).


S

________________________________

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Ray Gralak <groups3@gralak.com>
Sent: Thursday, 28 May 2020 11:04 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

Yes, it works at multiple new targets in one night in different parts of the sky. The methodology incorporates
a
plate solve of each image and subsequent correction using data from the previous image. It does what it's
supposed to do, easily.
So, in a first time setup how is the tracking rate set for the very first image?

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center):
https://nam12.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.astro-physics.com%2Fapcc-
pro&amp;data=02%7C01%7C%7Cc2c90a6ff62a4bb3240308d803d49a39%7C84df9e7fe9f640afb435aaaaaaaa
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erved=0> >


-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Steven Steven
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2020 6:27 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

Yes, it works at multiple new targets in one night in different parts of the sky. The methodology incorporates
a
plate solve of each image and subsequent correction using data from the previous image. It does what it's
supposed to do, easily.
S

________________________________

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Ray Gralak <groups3@gralak.com>
Sent: Thursday, 28 May 2020 9:15 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

Thanks Don, it's easy to use and I've been getting aspect ratios of around 2% to 6% regularly. This is
unprecedented with me. I set it up and go to sleep. Enjoy!
Does that work if you are going to do multiple new targets in one night in different parts of the sky?

I think that type of application may be useful for certain types of telescopes that are hard to model, like
some
of
the larger inexpensive truss tube scopes. If one is using a solid refractor the all-sky model that APCC Pro
creates will give excellent results throughout the sky. I've posted images up to 30 minutes unguided at
1.74"/pixel with round stars.

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center):
https://nam12.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.astro-physics.com%2Fapcc-
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XJmNY%3D&amp;reserved=0
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-----Original Message-----
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Steven Steven
Sent: Thursday, May 28, 2020 2:15 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

Thanks Don, it's easy to use and I've been getting aspect ratios of around 2% to 6% regularly. This is
unprecedented with me. I set it up and go to sleep. Enjoy!

Steve

PS: The plate solve is very useful and helpful in getting accuracy - to the pixel.
________________________________

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Donald Rudny
<mkea13800@gmail.com>
Sent: Thursday, 28 May 2020 5:02 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues

Thanks, Steven.

Here's a link to the manual.


https://nam12.safelinks.protection.outlook.com/?url=https%3A%2F%2Fforum.starkeeper.it%2Fuploads%2Fsho
rt-
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Don Rudny



On May 28, 2020, at 10:42 AM, Steven Steven <steven447@hotmail.com> wrote:





ATrack (Adaptive Tracking) has been around for a year doing the same thing and recently I
have
switched to it for unguided imaging. So if anyone wants to use ATrack while waiting for AP to add the
software
to APCC then they should contact Craig Young at Crystal Lake Observatory. The use of PinPoint is
requierd,
and that's easy.



________________________________

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io> on behalf of Terri Zittritsch
<theresamarie11@gmail.com>
Sent: Thursday, 28 May 2020 9:26 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 Unguided testing continues


Roland, this looks exciting, any ETA for release?

This seems like a great feature for us mobile (non fixed installation) users. Given how easy and
fast
this is, 5 minutes/hour of object tracking, will this be usable if you also have a PC connected (for things
like
plate solving) and do you use it with, or instead of, APCC?



Terri













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