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.

72 636 By jmsikora 5 days 4 hours ago

Optolong UBVRI filters

HQA Sat, 01/08/2022 - 14:39

Phil Sullivan loaned to me his set of 1.25" Optolong filters.  I know that James Hamilton (Wisconsin) is going to scan a set with better equipment than I have, so I did not do any spectral scans other than to make sure the bandpass looked reasonable.  I look forward to Dr. Hamilton's report!  The Optolong filters are mostly interference/dielectric and match the Johnson/Cousins bandpass central wavelength and shape.  Since attachments are forbidden on AAVSO forums, I can't include the normal images and plots that I would normally do.

What science can I really do with my configuration

American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO)
jmsikora Fri, 01/07/2022 - 01:37

Ok, I know that what I really need is a monochrome camera with the appropriate B and V filters, but I don't that right now. 

What I do have is a Mallincam DS10TEC (color) with a planewave 12.5 CDK. Just thinking about getting started in variable star observing. So, I was wondering what contributions can I provide with my rig. Or, do I really have to wait until I can get a more standard configuration.

Switch from DSLR to CCD

American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO)
vtekler Thu, 12/02/2021 - 15:38

I am now planning to move from DSLR photometry to CCD photometry. I plan to purchase an ASI 1600MM Pro CCD camera. Although I am primarily interested in determining the period of variable stars and the change of periods. DSLR photometry is well suited for this task. But I want my data to be usable by others. If anyone has experience with photometry with the ZWO ASI 1600MM, please let me know. I currently have a ZWO LRGB filter kit. The "G" filter covers the transmission characteristics of the Johnson V filter quite well.

Photometry for ZWO ASI294MC Pro

Nikita1501 Wed, 09/29/2021 - 13:57

Hi everybody. You can tell a beginner in the study of variable stars. I have a SW 200PDS EQ6 R Pro telescope and a ZWO ASI294MC Pro astrocamera (CMOS), I wanted to study variable stars. Visually, it seems to be easy to observe, but how can you send data to AAVSO using an astrocamera? I looked at the section where there are programs for exporting data, but either the program is already outdated or paid. I myself use Cartes du Ciel and the APT (Astro Photography Tool) program.

Revising the AAVSO [CCD] Photometry Manual...

American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO)
Richard Berry Sat, 09/25/2021 - 19:27

Hi all--

Since there's no other group or committee assigned to working on manuals, that responsibility falls to the Equipment and Instrumentation Section. The current manual dates to 2014, and it's very good. But as we all know, CMOS cameras and new filter types are changing the field of photometry. The manual needs updating.

Photometric Filters - Intereference type Chroma brand

American Association of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO)
dlee Tue, 09/21/2021 - 17:08

I'm looking it to acquiring some photometric filters. I'm interested in the interference type since I live on the west coast of Canada where we have a fair bit of moisture most of the time. I have a Schuler V from a number of years ago and it has the characteristic hygroscopic crusting that happens with the colour glass filters. 

When examining the response curves of the Bessell V and B of the Chroma brand I can see that the peaks of the curves are relatively flat for their range as opposed to the more gaussian "pointy" look of the traditional coloured glass filters.

Error in ASIIMG FITS header

British Astronomical Association, Variable Star Section (BAA-VSS)
Tony Vale Sun, 08/15/2021 - 17:09

 I have recently started using an ASI 183MM Pro CMOS camera for photometry. I started off using the ZWO ASIIMG software for image capture. However on checking the times recorded in the DATE-OBS field of the FITS header, as far as I can see, these  record the end time of the exposure when they should record the start.  If anyone is using this software,  it might be worth checking that the information in the DATE-OBS field is what they are expecting it to be. I have now switched to SIPS which seems to be fine.