Instrumentation and Equipment

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For discussions on all aspects of equipment, from building new devices from scratch, to what ready made products are the best for your current setup. Attached the "Instrumentation and Equipment" observing section.

108 831 By Degen1103 3 weeks 2 days ago

Lab tests of QHY411M camera

American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO)
bskiff Mon, 11/14/2022 - 00:28

     Hardware folks may find the following report of interest, which appeared on the astro-ph preprint server last week:

StarDICE I: sensor calibration bench and absolute photometric calibration of a Sony IMX411 sensor

Betoule et al, accepted for publication in A&A


Sponsored Site for Hosting Telescopes?

American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO)
msheald Sun, 10/09/2022 - 14:45

Hello! After I've moved to eastern Tennessee, at a location that is limited by tall trees in the horizon and lots of nights with clouds, I miss being able to image at a site that has more clear nights.

    Does the AAVSO sponsor a site that members could pay for/manage  to host their equipment (or are others interested in sharing the costs for a site)? I've looked at a number of sites, though most of them are expensive since they cater to astrophotographers rather than photometrists.

Dew Control?

American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO)
msheald Wed, 09/21/2022 - 10:25

Hello! I just set up my Meade LX200 Classic telescope in humid east Tennessee after moving from dry southern New Mexico. I've never had to deal with such dew before!

    I've been looking dew controllers.

    For those of you with SCTs who use dew control strips - do you put a strip around the corrector plate AND the primary mirror, or just the corrector plate?

    Is a small strip useful on the tube where the CCD connects to the telescope back as well? Thank you and best regards.


Photometry with smart phones?

Bundesdeutsche Arbeitsgemeinschaft fur Veranderliche Sterne e.V.(Germany) (BAV)
MatthiasK Thu, 08/25/2022 - 11:54


has anyone ever used a smart phone camera for photometry? In combination with a telescope or better even without?

My interest is not really scientific applications but rather education. I want to give a course at a local "junior university" (for kids aged 14+) and I assume most of them do not have DSLRs anymore but certainly all have 1-n smart phones...

Custom Silicon Chips at NO COST Wed, 08/17/2022 - 23:16
For those who have a product idea that needs new silicon chips, Skywater (ex-Cypress I believe) offers designers FREE chip fabrication, assy and demo boards for open source projects. Not the most recent node, but what the heck!! See: This appears to be a periodic offering. Peter BPEC

Photometric filters

Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC)
LMA Mon, 07/25/2022 - 21:19

Is there an up to date reference about the various photometric filters. I am considering buying a set (B.V,R,I) of photometric filters, 2 inch diameter. A quick search identified Baader and Uptolong as potential sources. I would appreciate to know about possible other manufacturers. Also, opinion about the performance of these various filters would be appreciated.