The equipment in use at my home in Portugal
- 8" F/10 Meade LX200 SCT. This is the 'classical' (i.e. old) model. It
has 'go-to' capability and remote focuser. I control it using the RS232
interface (made up from some telephone extension cable and a RS232-to-USB
converter) and Cartes du Ciel software.
- 4" F/5 Helios Refractor on tripod with unregulated RA drive. Nice clear
focussing and quick to set up, but not good for tracking.
- Olympus 8x40 binoculars for a "quick look".
- Eyepieces: Meade Super Plossl 6.4mm, 15mm, 26mm. Helios Plossl 6.3mm,
- Celestron Ultima SV x2 Barlow. Helios x2 Barlow
- Meade F/6.3 Focal Reducer.
- Star diagonals (x2), flip mirror
- Off Axis Guider
- Motor focus for LX200
- Various filters, extension tubes etc
- Starlight Express MX5-C 'one-shot-colour' camera. (Not currently in use
due to its need for parallel port)
- Toucam-Pro and SPC900NC webcams normally driven with K3CCD software.
- Canon EOS 1100D.
- Meade DSI with Autostar Envisage software.
- Dell Optiplex with i5 processor and 6Gb memory.
- Packard Bell laptop. I
can run the telescope control from this if need be or sit next to the
scope and see images from the camera while focussing/slewing manually.
- Wireless network connects the machines and provides broadband access.
Software used for astronomy-related activities:
- Cartes du Ciel - used to synch and control telescope movement & focus.
- MaxIm DL - used for initial processing of FITS images.
- Paint Shop Pro (PSPX4) used for final histogram, contrast, brightness,
colour adjustment. Used for constructing mosaic images, sizing and labelling
- K3CCD used for camera control and video image capture with webcams.
- RegiStax6 used for video frame selection, alignment, stacking and 'wavelet
filter'. Also used sometimes to stack still images from the DSI.
- Meade Autostar Envisage. Used to drive the DSI.
- Astrometrica for analysis and measurement of images.
- Find Orb for orbit calculations, residuals and clone production.
- Solex 11 for high-accuracy orbit simulations.
- This website has been produced with MS Front Page and uses Milonic menus.
- The Orbit Simulation and Cosmic Theory animations are written in Java and
maintained using NetBeans.