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Remote operation of telescope from in the house.

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#1 peetyg

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 11:49 AM

Im a novice and I don't have a permanent observatory or rollaway shed. I am planning to install a permanent pier with cover outside. I would like to run a ethernet cat 6 line to my house and control the scope, the auto focuser, guide camera and mount from inside. My understanding is wireless is somewhat slow.

there is so much information, but I'm looking for a simple solution.

current equipment is 9.25 hd edge, starlight express micro focuser and controller, atik 460ex OCD on Hyperstar. Still need to purchase a guide scope and guide camera. Would also like to piggy back a scope on the mount in the future for visual use or other AP. Current mount is a cgem.

what control soft wear do you recommend. I current have maxim DL

Could it be as simple as using a powered usb connection and than run ethernet to the house. Help would be appreciated.

thanks

Peetyg

#2 mclewis1

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 01:31 PM

Pete,

How far away is the pier location from your house?
What do you have in between the two (lawn, driveway, etc.)?

What do you have for Ethernet equipment in your house (existing switches, Internet routers, etc.)?

#3 PhilCo126

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 01:40 PM

Always an interesting topic, especially this year as we'll celebrate the 35th and 25th anniversaries of automatic telecopes.
In 1979 American astronomer David Skillman automated a 32 cm Cassegrain reflector using a Commodore KIM-1 and an Apple II computer.
On 15th february 1989, American astronomer Russell Genet pioneered the first remotely-controlled robotic telescope, a 25 cm Cassegrain reflector for NASA JPL.

http://www.vvs.be/we...euw-geautoma...

#4 fetoma

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 02:46 PM

I have this setup also, but I have a PC at the pier in a covered cabinet and use remote desktop to control it from my upstairs bedroom.

#5 peetyg

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 04:27 PM

will be about 30 feet away on my patio and sidewalk to navigate thru.

#6 peetyg

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 04:28 PM

would have buy new routers ext (mac mini)

#7 peetyg

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 04:29 PM

what do you use to cover your scope from the elements

#8 A. Viegas

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Posted 01 February 2014 - 11:24 PM

I have my CPC11 about 70ft from the house.

I run a USB 2.0 repeater of two 10m segments and then I use a non repeater 3m line from the desktop pc to the first repeater. This connects to a powered 4port hub at the scope. This run controls my higher bandwidth needs. DSI guider, frame grabber for mallincam and USB planetary camera if I use thAt too.

Next I run a 100 ft cat5 with 2 cheapo USB 1.1 baluns to another 4port powered hub at the scope. This runs all low bandwidth stuff like motofocus, filter wheel and USB-rs232 adapters

Total cost of this setup like $60.

I buried the wires in the grass and did not even use any PVC pipe or anything. So far it's worked fine in 0F and post heavy downpours and with snow on the ground. I also ran 100ft outdoor extension cord and one d those grounded plugs to a PowerStrip at the scope

I have a piggy back scope so I have run this setup with 3 cameras and it handles it fine. I have the scope and tripod covered with a telegizmo 365 and the. I use a telegizmo solar cover (super large Dob cover) to drape over the telegizmo 365 and cover all the way down the tripod.

Al

#9 Raginar

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 07:02 AM

Hey Peetyg,

You'll get more help if you write a bit more coherently. There are quite a few threads on how to image from outside from the comfort of your house. I prefer leaving a laptop at the telescope. From there, I would string a ethernet cable to it and run a VNC Server such as TightVNC to control it. This worked really well. Another option is 'active repeater' USB cables that allow you to operate from inside your house (max distance is about 75'). You can buy them on Amazon.

WIFI is an option for controlling a computer, but it can be unreliable. I really like the speed of ethernet.

Either way, focusing can be a pain if you don't have a screen right there which is why I suggest going with a laptop at the telescope.

Hope that helps, and do some searching on here. There are many topics with lots of detail.

#10 Raginar

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Posted 02 February 2014 - 07:03 AM

Skip MaximDL and use SGP. Better software IMHO.

#11 Derrickh24

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 11:07 PM

Hey Peetyg,
It sounds like you want to do exactly as I did...right down to getting a permanent pier, and covering it when not in use... The distance of the Ethernet run is now approx 60 ft to the house

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#12 Derrickh24

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 11:08 PM

Another

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#13 Derrickh24

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 11:09 PM

1 more

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#14 Derrickh24

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 11:22 PM

The Tele gizmo scope cover can be seen laying next to the pier.
This set up works flawlessly with a Win 8.1 I3 core PC with 4 gb ram.
I run BYEOS, Stellarium, Stellarium scope control plug in, and PHD all at the same time.

#15 telfish

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 07:55 AM

Neat! You can BBQ and observe the stars at the same time. Focus, flip steak.

#16 Derrickh24

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 09:09 AM

Lol@Telfish! Actually, I did have the smoker going one time I was out observing ( it was one of those 10 hour smoked pork sessions) ....talk about getting hungry at the eyepiece!.... M81/82 looked delicious! :grin:

Derrick

#17 microstar

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 11:09 PM

I run everything through a Cat5 cable using an ICRON Ranger 2104 with a USB hub. That includes guidecam, 2 cameras (CCD and DSLR), mount, 2 focusers, filter wheel. Everything can run simultaneously. Works flawlessly.
...Keith

#18 dawziecat

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 11:56 AM

I seem to be missing something? OP already has Maxim.

Just use Teamviewer from a computer inside the house over your WIFI connection. You control Maxim just as if you were outside using the computer on which Maxim is actually running.

Nothing else needed. Free.

#19 Derrickh24

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Posted 09 February 2014 - 01:48 PM

Unless....... The OP only has 1 laptop/computer, and or does not want to keep it outside at the pier......the "free" option no longer works.....

#20 Raginar

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Posted 12 February 2014 - 03:48 PM

Teamviewer is still free. Logmein went paid.

#21 Jim Meadows

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Posted 20 August 2014 - 04:11 PM

I have my C8 and CG-5 on wheels with Mallincam cameras attached and a powered hub on the wheel bars.  I can roll it out of my garage to a marked spot on the driveway, use the polar scope for a rough polar align, turn everything on and allow my StarSense Accessory to perform an alighment while I connect a 35' active usb to the powered hub and run it into my garage where I have my laptop set up.  If I want to move inside, I add a second 64' active USB extension to go inside with a total distance of 100'.  I control two cameras, the mount, focus control and a video capture device at the hub with a single USB cable to inside.  When done, I disconnect the single cable, roll it up, roll the scope into my garage and place a cover over it.  The powered USB hub was the key for my setup to work well for me.
 
Jim

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#22 mclewis1

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Posted 20 August 2014 - 05:14 PM

Jim,

 

Nice pic of a cool setup. I do something similar but I use two active USB connections for redundancy.

 

Do you have any close ups or more details on how you setup the MC Micro to the 50mm finder?

What frame grabbers are you using for the two video cameras?

What software are you using to control the JMI focuser (assuming it's remotely controlled)?

 

Here's my setup connectivity ...

 

Attached File  -Remote PC connectivity.jpg   76.13KB   1 downloads

 

 

 

 

 



#23 XRinger

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Posted 20 August 2014 - 06:12 PM

Wow, amazing stuff.. I love the rig on wheels! 

 

I'm just starting out in the wonderful world of remote control video astronomy..

I have no astronomy experience, but I have used video cameras at work a few times.

 

I'm lucky, I've only got about 20 feet between my scope and the monitor, in my den where I want to view.

Since the mount is going to be a Celestron AVX, I'm going to use RS-232 to control it, using an old Sony laptop w/ a real RS-232 port.

I'm also getting a PCMCIA to RS232 for another laptop, for backup

A wireless Wingman II will be used for most of the mount control. 

 

I'll be using the SCB-2000n camera, which I found is the prefect match for our old EDTV Panasonic 42" Plasma..

It has a composite input and a 'monitor' composite output for the USB video capture dongle. 

Picture quality is way better than I ever expected to see from a security camera.

At least it looked great before I removed the IR filter!

 

The mount is coming next week, so I might be armchair viewing before the end of the month! 

 

Cheers,

Rich








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