On Sun, Mar 14, 2021 at 10:07 AM, Ray Gralak wrote:
When I set up a target in SGP, I'll enter RA and DEC coordinates for the center of the image, as well as rotation angle of the frame. I start the evening with a "closed loop slew" to use TSX terminology to the target. The precision I require for the centering process is 30 points maximum error, which translates to roughly 20 arc-sec. If I am not running a model on the Mach2 or the AP1100, the "closed loop slew" to the target will usually take 2-3 slews. The first gets you within half a degree to a degree of the target, depending on its position in the sky, and the second one gets you perfectly there or almost. If I am using a model, depending on where the target is in the sky, it will take 1-2 slews to get there.
If I allow APCC to run counterweight up slews within East limits and if the target is within East limits, when SGP issues the first slew command to center the target, the mount will go in a CW up position with the scope on the East side pointing East. When I have been next to the mount I have observed that the next slew or two to refine the position of the mount and meet the required precision for centering the frame will be safety slews.
The same holds for meridian flips. After issuing the slew command that triggers the meridian flip, SGP will run a platosolve task to confirm the correct position of the target. Typically, it will then issue a second and rarely a third slew to center the target with 20 arc-sec precision. The slews after a meridan flip will not be safety slews because they are CW down.
My observation was that in theory starting from a CW up position saves imaging time, in practice I have found the opposite because safety slews take longer. That's all I was saying. Again, this is an entirely minor difference and overall minute contribution to overhead compared to time spent focusing, dithering, saving files, etc. If you relax the precision requirement, obviously it will take fewer slew to get the frame centered. I image targets over the course of several months and require this precision so I don't have to trim the edge of the frames excessively.
If there is a better way to set up APCC to reduce this time overhead, I am always looking for ways to improve how the software works together.