Mach2 mount - answers to questions


Marcelo Figueroa
 

Thank you for all the information. But I have a couple of questions about the new Pointing Model:

1) When will it be available for current CP4 users, will it work with all mounts that have it?

2) How exactly will it work, will it require any special software to use it?

Thanks again.


Horia
 

Thank you for this fantastic mount!

Some more questions:

1.    Will the mount fit the Tripod Adapter (ADATRI)?

2.    What options will the CP5 offer for connecting to it?

3.    I will use the mount in a remote observatory, and will have no way to access the Keypad. Will I be missing something (except for the objects database)? Will I be able to create/update the new CP5 Pointing/Tracking model? Will there be a Software utility to do so? Will the Interface commands for building the model be documented?

4.    After building and activating a model, will the Mount accept Sync/Recal commands?

5.    Will the ASCOM driver implement the “Set Side of Pier” function?

6.    Will the CP5 implement meridian and horizon (fixed value, no horizon profile necessary) limits? I know that APCC have that but have the feeling that for a mount with absolute encoders the natural position for this function is inside the mount controller. That way, the equipment will be protected even when the controlling PC crashes (it happens!).

Kind regards,
Horia


Ray Gralak
 

Hi Horia,

I think I can answer a couple of your questions.

You wrote:
2. What options will the CP5 offer for connecting to it?
The connections to the CP5 should be the same as the CP4 (two serial, one USB, one Ethernet, wi-fi). As was previously said, the CP5 is roughly the same as the CP4. The main difference is that the motor controller logic is different because of the different motors on the Mach 2.

4. After building and activating a model, will the Mount accept Sync/Recal commands?
Yes it should. What is your concern here?

6. Will the CP5 implement meridian and horizon (fixed value, no horizon
profile necessary) limits? I know that
APCC have that but have the feeling that for a mount with absolute encoders
the natural position for this function
is inside the mount controller. That way, the equipment will be protected even
when the controlling PC crashes (it happens!).
This is what happens today when using APCC (Standard or Pro). The feature is called "Safety Park".

If the computer crashes, APCC crashes, or the connection is broken to the mount, the mount will stop tracking after a user-configurable period of time (e.g. 1 minute).

-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


-----Original Message-----
From: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com [mailto:ap-gto@yahoogroups.com]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 2:15 AM
To: ap-gto@yahoogroups.com
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Thank you for this fantastic mount!

Some more questions:

1. Will the mount fit the Tripod Adapter (ADATRI)?


2. What options will the CP5 offer for connecting to it?


3. I will use the mount in a remote observatory, and will have no way to access the Keypad. Will I be missing
something (except for the objects database)? Will I be able to create/update the new CP5 Pointing/Tracking
model? Will there be a Software utility to do so? Will the Interface commands for building the model be
documented?


4. After building and activating a model, will the Mount accept Sync/Recal commands?


5. Will the ASCOM driver implement the “Set Side of Pier” function?


6. Will the CP5 implement meridian and horizon (fixed value, no horizon profile necessary) limits? I know that
APCC have that but have the feeling that for a mount with absolute encoders the natural position for this function
is inside the mount controller. That way, the equipment will be protected even when the controlling PC crashes (it
happens!).

Kind regards,
Horia




Roland Christen
 

Yes, it will definitely hold the RH305 plus camera.

Rolando


-----Original Message-----
From: ramviswanathan@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto
Sent: Wed, Apr 10, 2019 1:13 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Will the Mach2 GTO be able to hold an RH305 with camera? Or is that asking for too much?





Roland Christen
 

I will let you know more about it when we get our new keypad software. Both CP4 and CP5 have memory allocated for modeling. Right now we have plans to implement tracking modeling for unguided imaging.

Pointing models such as what is in APCC Pro do an all-sky measurement of sky positions which allows the sky map to be distorted and shifted to account for polar misalignment, atmospheric refraction and a host of other variables. This is quite useful for permanent installations since it only has to be done once and then tweaked for atmospheric pressure. Out of this modeling, you not only get a pointing correction but the model allows extracting a tracking correction over most of the sky.

However, if you're portable, you may use plate solve to do your pointing function, but you really want tracking correction for unguided imaging. This can be done much easier and straight forward, and that is what we are proposing to use the extra memory for. If it turns out that you all want a simple pointing correction model, then that may also be possible, but will be nowhere near the complexity of what's in APCC Pro.

Roland



-----Original Message-----
From: marfig1970@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto
Sent: Wed, Apr 10, 2019 3:43 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Thank you for all the information. But I have a couple of questions about the new Pointing Model:

1) When will it be available for current CP4 users, will it work with all mounts that have it?

2) How exactly will it work, will it require any special software to use it?

Thanks again.



Roland Christen
 

The CP5 is exactly like the CP4.

One thing we will implement is a fixed position setting for horizon and meridian lines because these can be defined as an absolute encoder number in both axes.

For the rest, Ray is correct, you would be using APCC Pro to control the mount, build models, set safe zones, etc to fully automate your mount. No keypad is needed for any functions in a remote observatory.

Roland



-----Original Message-----
From: ATM@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 4:15 am
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Thank you for this fantastic mount!

Some more questions:

1.    Will the mount fit the Tripod Adapter (ADATRI)?

2.    What options will the CP5 offer for connecting to it?

3.    I will use the mount in a remote observatory, and will have no way to access the Keypad. Will I be missing something (except for the objects database)? Will I be able to create/update the new CP5 Pointing/Tracking model? Will there be a Software utility to do so? Will the Interface commands for building the model be documented?

4.    After building and activating a model, will the Mount accept Sync/Recal commands?

5.    Will the ASCOM driver implement the “Set Side of Pier” function?

6.    Will the CP5 implement meridian and horizon (fixed value, no horizon profile necessary) limits? I know that APCC have that but have the feeling that for a mount with absolute encoders the natural position for this function is inside the mount controller. That way, the equipment will be protected even when the controlling PC crashes (it happens!).

Kind regards,
Horia




Thorsten Lockert
 

Does this mean that (in the future) APCC Pro will be able to upload (parts of) its generated model to the CP4 (or CP5) and have it be effective even when not using APCC?

Thorsten

On Apr 11, 2019, at 12:12, chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:


I will let you know more about it when we get our new keypad software. Both CP4 and CP5 have memory allocated for modeling. Right now we have plans to implement tracking modeling for unguided imaging.

Pointing models such as what is in APCC Pro do an all-sky measurement of sky positions which allows the sky map to be distorted and shifted to account for polar misalignment, atmospheric refraction and a host of other variables. This is quite useful for permanent installations since it only has to be done once and then tweaked for atmospheric pressure. Out of this modeling, you not only get a pointing correction but the model allows extracting a tracking correction over most of the sky.

However, if you're portable, you may use plate solve to do your pointing function, but you really want tracking correction for unguided imaging. This can be done much easier and straight forward, and that is what we are proposing to use the extra memory for. If it turns out that you all want a simple pointing correction model, then that may also be possible, but will be nowhere near the complexity of what's in APCC Pro.

Roland



-----Original Message-----
From: marfig1970@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Apr 10, 2019 3:43 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Thank you for all the information. But I have a couple of questions about the new Pointing Model:

1) When will it be available for current CP4 users, will it work with all mounts that have it?

2) How exactly will it work, will it require any special software to use it?

Thanks again.





W Hilmo
 

Just to toss out my thoughts on this response (since I asked for a pointing model earlier in the thread)…

 

You make the suggestion below that a portable user might use plate solving for imaging.  I would point out that if I am plate solving, then I am using a computer and will be running with APCC Pro – and this will definitely be my own common use case.

 

I can see the use case for unguided imaging with only a camera, and no computer and that’s really cool.  But I’m not sure how many people work like that.  I would guess that, for this quality of mount, that the majority of users would be imagers with an Astro camera and a computer.  I would guess that there are also going to be a lot of visual users (which is where I would personally benefit from a pointing model vs. a tracking model).  And I would think that the DSLR imagers with no computers would be quite a bit smaller than either of the other groups.  Of course, you are have actual data, and I just have my anecdotal experience at a (pretty large) number of star parties, so I could easily be wrong about this.

 

I’ve actually considered getting a stick PC to run APCC and attaching it to the mount, and then connecting SkySafari to the PC’s WiFi instead of the CP4’s WiFi.  The idea would be that I would run APPM at dusk to create a pointing model with a modest number of points.  For the rest of the night, I would do visual using SkySafari to drive the mount.  I would love to have this capability built into the mount.

 

That said, this is just my wish.  And frankly, if I were to sit down and come up with a list of every possible feature that I could ever want, the Mach2 pretty much hits everything, but this one case.  And then some.  It truly advances the state of the art in mounts.

 

Thanks,

-Wade

 

 

 

 

From: ap-gto@... [mailto:ap-gto@...]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 12:12 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

 

 

I will let you know more about it when we get our new keypad software. Both CP4 and CP5 have memory allocated for modeling. Right now we have plans to implement tracking modeling for unguided imaging.

 

Pointing models such as what is in APCC Pro do an all-sky measurement of sky positions which allows the sky map to be distorted and shifted to account for polar misalignment, atmospheric refraction and a host of other variables. This is quite useful for permanent installations since it only has to be done once and then tweaked for atmospheric pressure. Out of this modeling, you not only get a pointing correction but the model allows extracting a tracking correction over most of the sky.

 

However, if you're portable, you may use plate solve to do your pointing function, but you really want tracking correction for unguided imaging. This can be done much easier and straight forward, and that is what we are proposing to use the extra memory for. If it turns out that you all want a simple pointing correction model, then that may also be possible, but will be nowhere near the complexity of what's in APCC Pro.

 

Roland

 

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: marfig1970@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Apr 10, 2019 3:43 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

 

Thank you for all the information. But I have a couple of questions about the new Pointing Model:

 

1) When will it be available for current CP4 users, will it work with all mounts that have it?

 

2) How exactly will it work, will it require any special software to use it?

 

Thanks again.

 


Marcelo Figueroa
 

Thank you.

I will keep an eye out for new developments. I would love to do images without PHD2 and be able to do long exposures without guidance.


Roland Christen
 

I'm not sure how you would do that.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Thorsten Lockert tholo@... [ap-gto] To: ap-gto
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 2:53 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Does this mean that (in the future) APCC Pro will be able to upload (parts of) its generated model to the CP4 (or CP5) and have it be effective even when not using APCC?

Thorsten

On Apr 11, 2019, at 12:12, chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:


I will let you know more about it when we get our new keypad software. Both CP4 and CP5 have memory allocated for modeling. Right now we have plans to implement tracking modeling for unguided imaging.

Pointing models such as what is in APCC Pro do an all-sky measurement of sky positions which allows the sky map to be distorted and shifted to account for polar misalignment, atmospheric refraction and a host of other variables. This is quite useful for permanent installations since it only has to be done once and then tweaked for atmospheric pressure. Out of this modeling, you not only get a pointing correction but the model allows extracting a tracking correction over most of the sky.

However, if you're portable, you may use plate solve to do your pointing function, but you really want tracking correction for unguided imaging. This can be done much easier and straight forward, and that is what we are proposing to use the extra memory for. If it turns out that you all want a simple pointing correction model, then that may also be possible, but will be nowhere near the complexity of what's in APCC Pro.

Roland



-----Original Message-----
From: marfig1970@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Apr 10, 2019 3:43 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Thank you for all the information. But I have a couple of questions about the new Pointing Model:

1) When will it be available for current CP4 users, will it work with all mounts that have it?

2) How exactly will it work, will it require any special software to use it?

Thanks again.







Roland Christen
 

Well I think we can do a limited pointing model where you only need a few stars on either side (maybe 3 to 6). That's not enough data to do unguided imaging, but it can be done quickly. The real key is to do precision polar alignment, and I can show you how to use the power of the encoder mount's goto function to nail PA to the arc sec level in less than 60 seconds per azimuth and altitude adjustment. It uses what I call my "Pivot Star" method. It's a new method as far as i know but it borrows some features from my Daytime Polar Alignment routine - but much easier and very fast.

Once you are precision polar aligned, I have found that you can slew almost anywhere in the sky and have the object in the field of an 80 - 100 power eyepiece. No model needed. The only thing that throws it off is tube non-orthogonality when you flip sides. That would either have to be fixed mechanically (another incredibly easy thing to do) or it has to be measured and compensated in the software. I'll be looking at that also.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: 'Wade Hilmo' y.groups@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 5:37 pm
Subject: RE: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Just to toss out my thoughts on this response (since I asked for a pointing model earlier in the thread)…
 
You make the suggestion below that a portable user might use plate solving for imaging.  I would point out that if I am plate solving, then I am using a computer and will be running with APCC Pro – and this will definitely be my own common use case.
 
I can see the use case for unguided imaging with only a camera, and no computer and that’s really cool.  But I’m not sure how many people work like that.  I would guess that, for this quality of mount, that the majority of users would be imagers with an Astro camera and a computer.  I would guess that there are also going to be a lot of visual users (which is where I would personally benefit from a pointing model vs. a tracking model).  And I would think that the DSLR imagers with no computers would be quite a bit smaller than either of the other groups.  Of course, you are have actual data, and I just have my anecdotal experience at a (pretty large) number of star parties, so I could easily be wrong about this.
 
I’ve actually considered getting a stick PC to run APCC and attaching it to the mount, and then connecting SkySafari to the PC’s WiFi instead of the CP4’s WiFi.  The idea would be that I would run APPM at dusk to create a pointing model with a modest number of points.  For the rest of the night, I would do visual using SkySafari to drive the mount.  I would love to have this capability built into the mount.
 
That said, this is just my wish.  And frankly, if I were to sit down and come up with a list of every possible feature that I could ever want, the Mach2 pretty much hits everything, but this one case.  And then some.  It truly advances the state of the art in mounts.
 
Thanks,
-Wade
 
 
 
 
From: ap-gto@... [mailto:ap-gto@...]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 12:12 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions
 
 
I will let you know more about it when we get our new keypad software. Both CP4 and CP5 have memory allocated for modeling. Right now we have plans to implement tracking modeling for unguided imaging.
 
Pointing models such as what is in APCC Pro do an all-sky measurement of sky positions which allows the sky map to be distorted and shifted to account for polar misalignment, atmospheric refraction and a host of other variables. This is quite useful for permanent installations since it only has to be done once and then tweaked for atmospheric pressure. Out of this modeling, you not only get a pointing correction but the model allows extracting a tracking correction over most of the sky.
 
However, if you're portable, you may use plate solve to do your pointing function, but you really want tracking correction for unguided imaging. This can be done much easier and straight forward, and that is what we are proposing to use the extra memory for. If it turns out that you all want a simple pointing correction model, then that may also be possible, but will be nowhere near the complexity of what's in APCC Pro.
 
Roland
 
 
 
-----Original Message-----
From: marfig1970@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Apr 10, 2019 3:43 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions
 
Thank you for all the information. But I have a couple of questions about the new Pointing Model:
 
1) When will it be available for current CP4 users, will it work with all mounts that have it?
 
2) How exactly will it work, will it require any special software to use it?
 
Thanks again.
 



John Stiner
 

When can we hear the details of the new PA technique for AE mounts? I like the sound of it!


dang.astro
 

I know another user answered this, but does the Mach2 easily split in half for transport like the 1100 mount?

Thanks


Bill Long
 

Polar Alignment? The RAPAS unit should work well, PEMPro works excellent. Best PA tool I have ever used.


From: ap-gto@... on behalf of stinerjohn@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 5:37 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions
 
 

When can we hear the details of the new PA technique for AE mounts? I like the sound of it!


Roland Christen
 

By the way, the following method will also work with Non-encoder mounts:

I planned to do a short segment either with video or with pictures and words. This will take a clear sky. Last time i tried I bobbled up the video so badly that it really needed too much editing. However, i can give you a quick idea how it works.

My Pivot Point alignment uses two natural pivots on the mount that are projected on the sky. The first is the azimuth axis whose rotation is centered around the zenith. The azimuth can be rotated while the telescope is pointed straight up and a star right on the zenith will stay on the crosshair. So the zenith becomes the pivot point and can be called the azimuth reference.

The second pivot point is due east or due west on the horizon. If you send the scope to that part of the sky (obviously somewhat above the horizon), that star will stay on the crosshair if you tilt the altitude axis up or down by any amount. So now we have an altitude reference point.

The idea is that you start with the azimuth reference star near the zenith, centered on your crosshair and calibrated, then send the scope to a star along the meridian line further south and bring it to the crosshair via the azimuth adjusters.

Here is my scenario (you all will think up your own that's better for you):
1) Pick a star on SkyX, click on it and GoTo. Take continuous short exposures (MaximDL or whatever), with your direction buttons center it exactly on the crosshairs and Recal. Use high magnification if you want to go nuts on accuracy.
2) Find a star towards the South (for N-hemisphere observers), on the same side of the meridian, click and GoTo.
3) Turn the azimuth adjusters to move the star exactly onto the E-W crosshair (don't worry if it's off in the N-S direction)
4) you can slew back to the pivot star to make sure it's still on the crosshair.

You have achieved perfect azimuth alignment, within the limits of the accuracy of SkyX star position data, which is huugely accurate. And it took maybe 60 seconds?

Repeat with altitude by starting with a star near the eastern horizon. Center, recal, then slew to the same zenith star. Center the zenith star by adjusting the altitude axis up or down. Another 60 seconds.

Now verify by slewing to stars in between N-S and E-W and other areas of the sky. You should land most stars and objects near your crosshairs, and the primary errors will be atmospheric refraction. SkyX does not compensate for that, I think.

Rolando





-----Original Message-----
From: stinerjohn@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 7:52 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

When can we hear the details of the new PA technique for AE mounts? I like the sound of it!

------------------------------------
Posted by: stinerjohn@...
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Roland Christen
 

RAPAS is great for quick alignment in the field, especially when you don't have a computer and you just want to do visual. It can be very accurate.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto@...
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 8:01 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Polar Alignment? The RAPAS unit should work well, PEMPro works excellent. Best PA tool I have ever used.


From: ap-gto@... on behalf of stinerjohn@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 5:37 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions
 
 
When can we hear the details of the new PA technique for AE mounts? I like the sound of it!



Bill Long
 

Especially when you dial in PA with PEMPro nicely, the just adjust the RAPAS to mirror that. Then you get pretty close to deadly accurate with just RAPAS.


From: ap-gto@... on behalf of chris1011@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 6:42 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions
 
 

RAPAS is great for quick alignment in the field, especially when you don't have a computer and you just want to do visual. It can be very accurate.

Rolando



-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Long bill@... [ap-gto]
To: ap-gto@...
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 8:01 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions



Polar Alignment? The RAPAS unit should work well, PEMPro works excellent. Best PA tool I have ever used.


From: ap-gto@... on behalf of stinerjohn@... [ap-gto]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 5:37 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions
 
 
When can we hear the details of the new PA technique for AE mounts? I like the sound of it!



Konstantin von Poschinger
 

Hi Roland,

interesting sulution for polar alingment. 
One thing what is with the atmospheric refraction when you look at stars at the east orbwest horizon?

Grüsse

Konstantin v. Poschinger


Hammerichstr. 5
22605 Hamburg
040/8805747
0171/1983476

Am 12.04.2019 um 03:39 schrieb chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>:

 

By the way, the following method will also work with Non-encoder mounts:

I planned to do a short segment either with video or with pictures and words. This will take a clear sky. Last time i tried I bobbled up the video so badly that it really needed too much editing. However, i can give you a quick idea how it works.

My Pivot Point alignment uses two natural pivots on the mount that are projected on the sky. The first is the azimuth axis whose rotation is centered around the zenith. The azimuth can be rotated while the telescope is pointed straight up and a star right on the zenith will stay on the crosshair. So the zenith becomes the pivot point and can be called the azimuth reference.

The second pivot point is due east or due west on the horizon. If you send the scope to that part of the sky (obviously somewhat above the horizon), that star will stay on the crosshair if you tilt the altitude axis up or down by any amount. So now we have an altitude reference point.

The idea is that you start with the azimuth reference star near the zenith, centered on your crosshair and calibrated, then send the scope to a star along the meridian line further south and bring it to the crosshair via the azimuth adjusters.

Here is my scenario (you all will think up your own that's better for you):
1) Pick a star on SkyX, click on it and GoTo. Take continuous short exposures (MaximDL or whatever), with your direction buttons center it exactly on the crosshairs and Recal. Use high magnification if you want to go nuts on accuracy.
2) Find a star towards the South (for N-hemisphere observers), on the same side of the meridian, click and GoTo.
3) Turn the azimuth adjusters to move the star exactly onto the E-W crosshair (don't worry if it's off in the N-S direction)
4) you can slew back to the pivot star to make sure it's still on the crosshair.

You have achieved perfect azimuth alignment, within the limits of the accuracy of SkyX star position data, which is huugely accurate. And it took maybe 60 seconds?

Repeat with altitude by starting with a star near the eastern horizon. Center, recal, then slew to the same zenith star. Center the zenith star by adjusting the altitude axis up or down. Another 60 seconds.

Now verify by slewing to stars in between N-S and E-W and other areas of the sky. You should land most stars and objects near your crosshairs, and the primary errors will be atmospheric refraction. SkyX does not compensate for that, I think.

Rolando





-----Original Message-----
From: stinerjohn@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 7:52 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

When can we hear the details of the new PA technique for AE mounts? I like the sound of it!

------------------------------------
Posted by: stinerjohn@...
------------------------------------

To UNSUBSCRIBE, or for general information on the ap-gto list
see http://groups.yahoo.com/group/ap-gto
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George Lutch
 

I know the Mach2 is a total redesign so my question is when buying a tripod what adapter do I get with the tripod?
George C. Lutch



On Fri, Apr 12, 2019 at 5:22 AM 'Konstantin v. Poschinger' k.poschinger@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...> wrote:
 

Hi Roland,


interesting sulution for polar alingment. 
One thing what is with the atmospheric refraction when you look at stars at the east orbwest horizon?

Grüsse

Konstantin v. Poschinger


Hammerichstr. 5
22605 Hamburg
040/8805747
0171/1983476

Am 12.04.2019 um 03:39 schrieb chris1011@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>:

 

By the way, the following method will also work with Non-encoder mounts:

I planned to do a short segment either with video or with pictures and words. This will take a clear sky. Last time i tried I bobbled up the video so badly that it really needed too much editing. However, i can give you a quick idea how it works.

My Pivot Point alignment uses two natural pivots on the mount that are projected on the sky. The first is the azimuth axis whose rotation is centered around the zenith. The azimuth can be rotated while the telescope is pointed straight up and a star right on the zenith will stay on the crosshair. So the zenith becomes the pivot point and can be called the azimuth reference.

The second pivot point is due east or due west on the horizon. If you send the scope to that part of the sky (obviously somewhat above the horizon), that star will stay on the crosshair if you tilt the altitude axis up or down by any amount. So now we have an altitude reference point.

The idea is that you start with the azimuth reference star near the zenith, centered on your crosshair and calibrated, then send the scope to a star along the meridian line further south and bring it to the crosshair via the azimuth adjusters.

Here is my scenario (you all will think up your own that's better for you):
1) Pick a star on SkyX, click on it and GoTo. Take continuous short exposures (MaximDL or whatever), with your direction buttons center it exactly on the crosshairs and Recal. Use high magnification if you want to go nuts on accuracy.
2) Find a star towards the South (for N-hemisphere observers), on the same side of the meridian, click and GoTo.
3) Turn the azimuth adjusters to move the star exactly onto the E-W crosshair (don't worry if it's off in the N-S direction)
4) you can slew back to the pivot star to make sure it's still on the crosshair.

You have achieved perfect azimuth alignment, within the limits of the accuracy of SkyX star position data, which is huugely accurate. And it took maybe 60 seconds?

Repeat with altitude by starting with a star near the eastern horizon. Center, recal, then slew to the same zenith star. Center the zenith star by adjusting the altitude axis up or down. Another 60 seconds.

Now verify by slewing to stars in between N-S and E-W and other areas of the sky. You should land most stars and objects near your crosshairs, and the primary errors will be atmospheric refraction. SkyX does not compensate for that, I think.

Rolando





-----Original Message-----
From: stinerjohn@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@yahoogroups..com>
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 7:52 pm
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

When can we hear the details of the new PA technique for AE mounts? I like the sound of it!

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W Hilmo
 

Polar alignment is no problem.  There are lots of ways to do that (I just read your pivot star method, and it sounds brilliant).

 

Fixing orthogonality in the scope is not what I would call “incredibly easy” for a scope like my C14, although I confess that I haven’t tried.  If I understand correctly, I need to be able to point the scope at a distant, fixed object.  This would be impossible at home, because there are trees no further than a couple hundred feet in every direction (and much closer in most directions).  I would have to do it out in the field, where I don’t have a good workspace to be able to shim the dovetail.  That’s why I would be happy to see this handled by the mount.

 

Thanks!

 

-Wade

 

From: ap-gto@... [mailto:ap-gto@...]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 4:41 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

 

 

Well I think we can do a limited pointing model where you only need a few stars on either side (maybe 3 to 6). That's not enough data to do unguided imaging, but it can be done quickly. The real key is to do precision polar alignment, and I can show you how to use the power of the encoder mount's goto function to nail PA to the arc sec level in less than 60 seconds per azimuth and altitude adjustment. It uses what I call my "Pivot Star" method. It's a new method as far as i know but it borrows some features from my Daytime Polar Alignment routine - but much easier and very fast.

 

Once you are precision polar aligned, I have found that you can slew almost anywhere in the sky and have the object in the field of an 80 - 100 power eyepiece. No model needed. The only thing that throws it off is tube non-orthogonality when you flip sides. That would either have to be fixed mechanically (another incredibly easy thing to do) or it has to be measured and compensated in the software. I'll be looking at that also.

 

Rolando

 

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: 'Wade Hilmo' y.groups@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Thu, Apr 11, 2019 5:37 pm
Subject: RE: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

 

Just to toss out my thoughts on this response (since I asked for a pointing model earlier in the thread)…

 

You make the suggestion below that a portable user might use plate solving for imaging.  I would point out that if I am plate solving, then I am using a computer and will be running with APCC Pro – and this will definitely be my own common use case.

 

I can see the use case for unguided imaging with only a camera, and no computer and that’s really cool.  But I’m not sure how many people work like that.  I would guess that, for this quality of mount, that the majority of users would be imagers with an Astro camera and a computer.  I would guess that there are also going to be a lot of visual users (which is where I would personally benefit from a pointing model vs. a tracking model).  And I would think that the DSLR imagers with no computers would be quite a bit smaller than either of the other groups.  Of course, you are have actual data, and I just have my anecdotal experience at a (pretty large) number of star parties, so I could easily be wrong about this.

 

I’ve actually considered getting a stick PC to run APCC and attaching it to the mount, and then connecting SkySafari to the PC’s WiFi instead of the CP4’s WiFi.  The idea would be that I would run APPM at dusk to create a pointing model with a modest number of points.  For the rest of the night, I would do visual using SkySafari to drive the mount.  I would love to have this capability built into the mount.

 

That said, this is just my wish.  And frankly, if I were to sit down and come up with a list of every possible feature that I could ever want, the Mach2 pretty much hits everything, but this one case.  And then some.  It truly advances the state of the art in mounts.

 

Thanks,

-Wade

 

 

 

 

From: ap-gto@... [mailto:ap-gto@...]
Sent: Thursday, April 11, 2019 12:12 PM
To: ap-gto@...
Subject: Re: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

 

 

I will let you know more about it when we get our new keypad software. Both CP4 and CP5 have memory allocated for modeling. Right now we have plans to implement tracking modeling for unguided imaging.

 

Pointing models such as what is in APCC Pro do an all-sky measurement of sky positions which allows the sky map to be distorted and shifted to account for polar misalignment, atmospheric refraction and a host of other variables. This is quite useful for permanent installations since it only has to be done once and then tweaked for atmospheric pressure. Out of this modeling, you not only get a pointing correction but the model allows extracting a tracking correction over most of the sky.

 

However, if you're portable, you may use plate solve to do your pointing function, but you really want tracking correction for unguided imaging. This can be done much easier and straight forward, and that is what we are proposing to use the extra memory for. If it turns out that you all want a simple pointing correction model, then that may also be possible, but will be nowhere near the complexity of what's in APCC Pro.

 

Roland

 

 

 

-----Original Message-----
From: marfig1970@... [ap-gto] <ap-gto@...>
To: ap-gto <ap-gto@...>
Sent: Wed, Apr 10, 2019 3:43 pm
Subject: [ap-gto] Re: Mach2 mount - answers to questions

 

Thank you for all the information. But I have a couple of questions about the new Pointing Model:

 

1) When will it be available for current CP4 users, will it work with all mounts that have it?

 

2) How exactly will it work, will it require any special software to use it?

 

Thanks again.