Date   

Power Supply for Imaging at Remote Locations

M Hambrick
 

Hi to All

Up until now, all of my imaging has been dome from my back yard where I have a reliable source of 110 VAC power. I am starting to investigate what is required to run everything off of 12V deep cycle batteries, and I would like to get some input from other users who do a lot of imaging from remote locations (or maybe California :>)) where there is no reliable source of power.

My imaging system is pretty typical of what most users have; Mount (1100GTO), Camera (SBIG STXL16200 with filter wheel), Dew heaters, Laptop, Electronic focuser, and Icron Ranger. I can easily imagine that such a system might require three separate batteries.

How are other users managing this ?


Re: Mach2 update?

Suresh Mohan
 

It’s on the website , my bad
Suresh 


On 21-Nov-2019, at 7:39 AM, Suresh Mohan via Groups.Io <drsureshmohan@...> wrote:

Has the final price been determined ?
Suresh


On 21-Nov-2019, at 7:14 AM, Jerome Allison <jallison@...> wrote:

Thanks everyone for the pictures and info.  I was really puzzled by the early pictures which showed a blue box with a lot of I/O connectors, including power and USB, mounted on top.  The box had a bright blue "screen" that looked like it had power, but its cables seemed to disappear into the Dec axis.  I see now that the (unused at the time) PowerPole and USB connectors are at the rear end of the RA axis, as I thought they would be. :)  Plus, I discovered some interesting new hardware, the Pegasus Astro Power Box.


Starting plate solve with APPM, error message

Peter Bresler
 

"Image path does not point to a valid file"

I am getting this error message when I start the plate solve on APPM. How do I fix?


Re: Mach2 update?

Karen Christen
 

Yes, Suresh. The price is $8940.
Karen, AP

On Nov 20, 2019 8:11 PM, Suresh Mohan <drsureshmohan@...> wrote:
Has the final price been determined ?
Suresh


On 21-Nov-2019, at 7:14 AM, Jerome Allison <jallison@...> wrote:

Thanks everyone for the pictures and info.  I was really puzzled by the early pictures which showed a blue box with a lot of I/O connectors, including power and USB, mounted on top.  The box had a bright blue "screen" that looked like it had power, but its cables seemed to disappear into the Dec axis.  I see now that the (unused at the time) PowerPole and USB connectors are at the rear end of the RA axis, as I thought they would be. :)  Plus, I discovered some interesting new hardware, the Pegasus Astro Power Box.

--
Karen Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: Orthogonality question

Roland Christen
 

Hi Jimmy,

Your analysis is correct.

Best way to address orthogonality is with proper shimming of the telescope so that the optical axis points exactly at the pole when the mount is properly polar aligned and the Dec axis is sent to 90 degrees.  This eliminates the polar donut hole that results if the scope is not mechanically orthogonal and allows the scope to point to all positions in the sky.

Next best way is to compensate for orthogonality with software. We do have a method to do this but have not yet implemented it in our keypad. It is fully tested and works very well for 95% of the sky, but of course cannot compensate for the donut hole of the pole. We are working on a simple keypad modeling routine and should have it done for our next update.

The routine is quite simple and straight forward. The result can be used to either adjust the orthogonality, altitude and azimuth mechanically, or it can be simply added to the CP4/5 controller as a model to compensate for orthogonal, altitude and azimuth errors. The first will get you great pointing + better tracking, the second will get you great pointing.

Beyond that we will also implement a simple tracking model in the keypad that measures the drift rate along a constant Dec line for any object which you wish to image. It will allow unguided imaging for that object over the arc that you measured. In my tests with the 17"F8 astrograph on a 1600 encoder mount I measured only 3 points along a 3 hour image arc and was able to track the object with nice round stars in a series of 30 minute exposures.

Neither of these routines is a full sky model such as you would do with APCC-APPM on a fixed observatory mount, rather they are designed for quick setup in the field with minimal effort.





-----Original Message-----
From: jimmyjujames <jimmy_an@...>
To: main <main@ap-gto.groups.io>
Sent: Wed, Nov 20, 2019 7:45 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Orthogonality question

[Edited Message Follows]
If OE is short for orthogonality error.
 
An Orthogonality error (OE) is only east-west when pointing at zenith or along meridian.
OE is always in line with the counter-weight shaft.
When pointing at NCP with counter-weight shaft pointing down, OE is north-south.
 
 What is an orthogonality error (OE)?
 
 With the counter-weights down and scope pointing at NCP.
 An orthogonality error will cause the scope's viewing point to be above or below NCP.
 
 To the left or right of NCP is not an error.
 You can move Dec to remove any left or right offset.
 
 Rotating RA from east side to west side will move the scope's
 viewing point around NCP tracing out half of a circle around NCP.
 Scope will hit the pier before the other half of circle completes.
 
 Radius of this circle is your (1x) orthogonality error.
 Diameter of the circle is 2 times (2x) your orthogonality error.
 
 If you move the counter-weight shaft to west side and horizontal/level with ground, the scope's 
 viewing point will be either east or west of NCP by (1x) your orthogonality error.
 
 If you move the counter-weight shaft to east side and horizontal/level with ground,
 you will miss NCP by 1x on the other side of NCP.
 
 1x on one side of NCP, meridian flip and 1x off on other side = 2x orthogonality error when
 flipping from east to west side.
 
 If you move scope from NCP to zenith to Dec=0 to SCP, your scope's viewing point will be east or
 west of meridian by your 1x orthogonality error everywhere along that path.
 
 You will have to shim the front or rear ring to bring your viewing point back to NCP.
 
 After minimizing your orthogonality error,
 future meridian flips should result in star in FOV on both sides.
 
 If not then you may have flexure and/or worm needs re-meshing and/or
 something is loose and needs tightening.
 
As always, I may be wrong again.
Jimmy


Re: Mach2 update?

Yves Laroche
 

Hi all,

The Pegasus Astro Ultimate Powerbox v2 is costly but could be a great add-on for the Mach2 and other mounts.  Don't forget that this unit works at very low temp (-40C/-40F).  Another cheaper solution is to buy a power distribution (PD-4 or PD-8) from Powerwerx and the new USB Control Hub (-40C/-40F) also from Pegasus Astro.


Regards,
Yves


Le 20/11/19 20:44, Jerome Allison <jallison@...> a écrit :
Thanks everyone for the pictures and info.  I was really puzzled by the early pictures which showed a blue box with a lot of I/O connectors, including power and USB, mounted on top.  The box had a bright blue "screen" that looked like it had power, but its cables seemed to disappear into the Dec axis.  I see now that the (unused at the time) PowerPole and USB connectors are at the rear end of the RA axis, as I thought they would be. :)  Plus, I discovered some interesting new hardware, the Pegasus Astro Power Box.


Re: Mach2 update?

Suresh Mohan
 

Has the final price been determined ?
Suresh


On 21-Nov-2019, at 7:14 AM, Jerome Allison <jallison@...> wrote:

Thanks everyone for the pictures and info.  I was really puzzled by the early pictures which showed a blue box with a lot of I/O connectors, including power and USB, mounted on top.  The box had a bright blue "screen" that looked like it had power, but its cables seemed to disappear into the Dec axis.  I see now that the (unused at the time) PowerPole and USB connectors are at the rear end of the RA axis, as I thought they would be. :)  Plus, I discovered some interesting new hardware, the Pegasus Astro Power Box.


Re: Mach2 update?

 

Thanks everyone for the pictures and info.  I was really puzzled by the early pictures which showed a blue box with a lot of I/O connectors, including power and USB, mounted on top.  The box had a bright blue "screen" that looked like it had power, but its cables seemed to disappear into the Dec axis.  I see now that the (unused at the time) PowerPole and USB connectors are at the rear end of the RA axis, as I thought they would be. :)  Plus, I discovered some interesting new hardware, the Pegasus Astro Power Box.


Re: Mach2 update?

David
 

Terri,

A good place to check for Powerpole stuff is www.powerwerx.com 

They sell all things Powerpole.  Its the best power solution in my opinion, hard to beat.  You can make your own cables, whatever gauge and whatever length you need for next to nothing.  Maybe  $2-3 per cable for an average length.  15, 30, and 45 amp plugs all fit the same size plugs, just use different gauge wires depending on your power needs.  I would think the 15 or 30 amp connectors would be all you’d ever need for an astro setup.  Red/black zip wire is sold by the roll, and get a crimper from their site and you’re good to go to make your own cables.  They also sell pre-made cables if you need some, and their power supplies are great too.  I switched all my gear to Powerpoles a couple years ago, love them.  Never switching to anything else.

To get started all you need is:
https://powerwerx.com/red-black-bonded-zip-cord  in whatever gauge and length you deem necessary, but 14 gauge for the 30 amp connectors.


https://powerwerx.com/anderson-powerpole-connectors-30amp-bonded  30 amp connectors for 12-14 gauge wire,  how ever many sets you need.  


David





On Nov 20, 2019, at 5:52 PM, Karen Christen <karen@...> wrote:

Hi Terri,
 
Here’s a close-up of the connectors at the top of the Dec plate.  The connectors are USB3-A and PowerPole on both ends.  The reason for the dual USB3-A female connectors is that the USB3-B plug end generally goes into your peripheral equipment – camera, dew heater, etc.  The PowerPoles were a great universal choice for 12V power and their small form factor fit well with the Mach2.
 
Clear skies,
Karen, AP
 
From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Terri Zittritsch
Sent: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 6:46 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 update?
 
Karen, maybe show a picture of the connectors on the dec axis..  are they they same kinds of connectors.     Most of my USB 3 cables have a B plug on the non-computer side.. this shows an A style plug.    Not sure why it matters actually, it's just what all of my 3.0 cables are.  Not a big deal to buy new cables, just curious about the choice.     I've never used power-poles either so it looks like I'll need to get a handful to connect my battery setup as well as topside electronics.   Do I just get the power-pole pairs?     

best,
Terri  


-- 
Karen Christen
Astro-Physics<Mach2 Dec Ports Close-Up.jpg>


Re: Mach2 update?

Karen Christen
 

Hi Terri,

 

Here’s a close-up of the connectors at the top of the Dec plate.  The connectors are USB3-A and PowerPole on both ends.  The reason for the dual USB3-A female connectors is that the USB3-B plug end generally goes into your peripheral equipment – camera, dew heater, etc.  The PowerPoles were a great universal choice for 12V power and their small form factor fit well with the Mach2.

 

Clear skies,

Karen, AP

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Terri Zittritsch
Sent: Wednesday, November 20, 2019 6:46 AM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 update?

 

Karen, maybe show a picture of the connectors on the dec axis..  are they they same kinds of connectors.     Most of my USB 3 cables have a B plug on the non-computer side.. this shows an A style plug.    Not sure why it matters actually, it's just what all of my 3.0 cables are.  Not a big deal to buy new cables, just curious about the choice.     I've never used power-poles either so it looks like I'll need to get a handful to connect my battery setup as well as topside electronics.   Do I just get the power-pole pairs?     

best,
Terri 


--
Karen Christen
Astro-Physics


Connecting to GTOCP4

Chris Johnston
 

Hi

I am commissioning a new 1600 when I can connect to it..

I started with wifi.   I was able to log onto the web page and configure it as a station.   I found that it logged on intermitently so I changed to USB.    This worked fine for the last month, but now my computer (Windows 10) reports the the USB connection is unknown.   I have replaced the drivers, I have tested the usb port, replaced the usb cable and no go.   I have now reverted to the wifi.   Previously, I did not realise there was that small antenna on the top so I have raised that and it is working so far.

My questions are :-

(1) I cannot log into the web page for the GTOCP4 now.   I can see it on the wifi  options, but it does not accept the password specified and which I used before.    Any ideas about this?

(2) Any ideas I can try for direct connection to USB to get my PC to recognise the connection and assign a comms port?   As I said it has worked for a month before this and suddenly stopped working.

Regards
Chris 


Re: Mach2 update?

Dean Jacobsen
 
Edited

Hi Karen, I think I am good now as far as pictures are concerned.  Ray posted a few in his gallery.

The good folks at Astro-Physics have always put out exceptionally well done manuals for their mounts.  I am watching for the Mach2 manual to be posted, which will keep me busy while waiting for my Christmas present to myself to arrive.

Dean Jacobsen
Astrobin - https://www.astrobin.com/users/deanjacobsen/
AstroBlog - http://astrophoto.net/wp/


Re: AIC 2019 Photos - including some of the Mach 2

Dean Jacobsen
 

Thanks.

Dean Jacobsen


Re: Mach2 update?

Terri Zittritsch
 

Karen, maybe show a picture of the connectors on the dec axis..  are they they same kinds of connectors.     Most of my USB 3 cables have a B plug on the non-computer side.. this shows an A style plug.    Not sure why it matters actually, it's just what all of my 3.0 cables are.  Not a big deal to buy new cables, just curious about the choice.     I've never used power-poles either so it looks like I'll need to get a handful to connect my battery setup as well as topside electronics.   Do I just get the power-pole pairs?     

best,
Terri 


AIC 2019 Photos - including some of the Mach 2

Ray Gralak
 

Here are some photos from AIC, which was held over last weekend. I took the vendor booth photos Saturday morning before attendees were allowed in the area so I could easily get unobstructed photos. The Mach 2 is in the first half dozen photos:

https://raygralak.smugmug.com/Astronomy/Advanced-Imaging-Conferences/AIC-2019/

-Ray Gralak
Author of APCC (Astro-Physics Command Center): http://www.astro-physics.com/index.htm?products/accessories/software/apcc/apcc
Author of PEMPro V3: https://www.ccdware.com
Author of Astro-Physics V2 ASCOM Driver: https://www.siriusimaging.com/apdriver


Re: Mach2 update?

Karen Christen
 

Yes, Dean, you’re correct regarding the RAPAS holder bracket location just below the motor housing.  We didn’t show the RAPAS on the Mach2 at AIC as it was on the 1600GTO.  Are there any other specific pics you or anyone else might find helpful?

 

Rick – thanks for the photo and nice comments.  It was a pleasure meeting you at AIC!

Karen 

 

From: main@ap-gto.groups.io [mailto:main@ap-gto.groups.io] On Behalf Of Dean Jacobsen
Sent: Tuesday, November 19, 2019 4:33 PM
To: main@ap-gto.groups.io
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 update?

 

Thanks Rick. It’s nice to see the controller box and the connections on the mount. That black plate just below the motor housing must be the attachment point for the RAPAS holder.  

Dean Jacobsen 


--
Karen Christen
Astro-Physics


Re: Mach2 update?

Dean Jacobsen
 

Thanks Rick. It’s nice to see the controller box and the connections on the mount. That black plate just below the motor housing must be the attachment point for the RAPAS holder.  

Dean Jacobsen 


Re: Mach2 update?

Rick Socarras
 

Dean,

Here is a picture from AIC of the Mach 2 bottom connections.  The Mach 2 looks like it's siblings...elegant and very well executed.  Finish and function to perfection.  The sound, or rather lack thereof was stunning.  The ease in which the mount moved what it had mounted on it seemed silly to me.  The Mach 2 DID NOT MOVE when using force against it.  I expect mounts to have some give or play but it was unyielding to my efforts.   I will finish my comments by saying that I feel a great deal of attention has been paid to this mount and I dare say love as well.  It's just a mount...but what a mount it is...


APCC Windows Priority #APCC

Claude Benoit
 

Hello, I'm getting to know APCC as a new user. I've accepted the default Windows priority as Above Normal. While using the Polemaster application I've noticed communication delays between the application and camera. In bench testing the Polemaster with APCC not operating. everything seems to work fine. I'm thinking that I could try changing APCC Windows Priority to Normal and see what happens...

I've also developed an issue with MaximDL displaying an "error calibrating guider algorithm" which is random but occurs more often than not. I'm connected to the AP ASCOM V2 driver through APCC virtual port 21. MaximDL is connected to the telescope and I'm using Telescope on the guide tab. I've never seen this error before. I can switch to PHD2 and it works fine. I was thinking it was somehow linked to the Windows Priority. 

I have com ports 21-24 enabled but I only use com 21. I'm deleting com 22-24 and will try that.

Any thoughts on this matter much appreciated and thankyou for your time.
Claude Benoit


Re: Mach2 update?

Dean Jacobsen
 

Still hoping to see a full set of detail photos of the final configuration of the production model of the Mach2. 🙂

Dean J.

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