Jan 092021
Click for larger image


My astro mount is beside my garage with a PC just inside to control it. I can control the mount and cameras remotely from my home study using Google Remote Desktop – but not my Orion AccuFocus focusers.

I read a forum post (that I can’t now find) which explained how to control the focuser over USB. I adapted it slightly to avoid the need for stripping one end of the focuser cable by adding an RJ10 socket.

Component links: USB RelayRJ10 Socket

The wiring diagram I used is here. Note that the wires to the socket are soldered to the left and right pair of pins respectively.

To control it, I modded an app I found on the net to give me a selection of timed pulses in both directions. This gives fantastic control for fine focussing.

The whole thing cost less than £10 but means I can now control everything from the comfort of home – or even further afield.

 Posted by at 2:42 pm

Moon with £12 Camera

 CHDK AstroKam, Moon  Comments Off on Moon with £12 Camera
Dec 222020

I took this with a second hand, grade C Canon A810 camera I got for £12 looking thru the eyepiece of my Nextar 4SE. Capture of 54x 30sec videos done in CHDK-PTP, stacking in AviStack, stitched in MS ICE and polished in Paint.NET.

Click for Full Size Image (3200×4400, 6MB)
 Posted by at 2:42 pm

Solar Animation Compilation

 Solar HA  Comments Off on Solar Animation Compilation
Aug 212020

This is a compilation of my solar animations made between 2012 and 2020. Most were made with a Coronado personal solar scope and DMK21 camera. Watch out for the Mercury 2016 transit at the end.

 Posted by at 12:01 pm

DMD Baby Birds Feeding

 Birds  Comments Off on DMD Baby Birds Feeding
Jun 092020

This was taken with my SX530HS using the CHDK extended video script to capture 200 minutes of video. I then selected all the feeder visits in DMD which produced a 27 minute ShotCut project file. This was slowed to half speed to better show the action and the sound track was cleaned up in Audacity to remove camera and traffic noise. Watch out for the one legged blackbird which we have nursed back to health over the past few months.

 Posted by at 12:06 pm

DSSR+AstroKam Moon

 CHDK AstroKam, Moon  Comments Off on DSSR+AstroKam Moon
Jun 022020

These images were taken using my Canon SX530HS with its zoom set to 100x (2400mm EFL). Capture was controlled by CHDK AstroKam and autoguiding by DSSR. Best 500 of 1000 jpegs were cropped in PIPP, stacked in AS3! and wavelets in Registax.

100% detail
Click for full size image
 Posted by at 2:07 pm

AstroKam Spring Collection

 CHDK AstroKam, Deep Sky  Comments Off on AstroKam Spring Collection
Apr 302020

Scotland had a great spell of cloud free weather in Spring 2020 and below are some of my deep sky captures. All were captured on my Canon PowerShot SX530HS superzoom camera using CHDK AstroKam, stacked in Deep Sky Stacker and processed in StarTools. Click an image for full size.

 Posted by at 12:28 pm

CHDK AstroKam M101

 CHDK AstroKam, Deep Sky  Comments Off on CHDK AstroKam M101
Apr 182020

M101 captured with a Canon SX530HS at 50x zoom in CHDK AstroKam. 50x200sec lights at f8 and ISO 1600 with 15 each darks and offsets. Stacked in Deep Sky Stacker, processed in StarTools and polished in Paint.net.

 Posted by at 1:48 pm

58 Galaxies from SX530HS

 CHDK AstroKam, Deep Sky  Comments Off on 58 Galaxies from SX530HS
Mar 222020

I took a shot of the night sky with my SX530HS and submitted it to nova.astrometry.net for analysis. They returned the result within a few minutes, including a copy of the original image with deep sky object labels superimposed. Below is a detail of that image.

Click image to see all 58 galaxies

Pretty good for a point and shoot camera and a great service from http://nova.astrometry.net.

 Posted by at 10:34 am

3D Gravity Simulation

 Uncategorized  Comments Off on 3D Gravity Simulation
Mar 092020
StarryOrbits Test Animation

Video shows massive stars being fired into star clusters and how they interact under gravity alone.

 Posted by at 1:42 pm