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Tech ?? for MC Pro for Ugandan/overseas outreach

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#1 rolandskythree

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Posted 31 December 2007 - 05:20 PM

Jack Huerkamp was nice enough to donate a MC Pro for our ministry work where we do observational astronomy for teachers and children in impoverished regions. We are giving a little Vernon scope (80mm f/6 refractor with lots of CA) to our friends overseas along with the necessary diagaonals, EPs for visual use. But I will use the same setup with the MC Pro to demonstrate the sky several times during our classes. The first "mission" trip for the camera setup will probably be in Uganda in 08 so I am experimenting using sense up settings on this little refractor. If someone has experimented with reduced senseup settings on a wide field little refractor, I can shorten my investigation by just confirming a couple points.

I already know the Vernon scope can use the MallinCAM series straight in (no diagonal) and we are rigging it on an old Meade tripod that can be set for 0 latitude, but there is no power (and no power at the location where we will be for two months), no slow motion controls that are very usable, and no electronic things on the mount. I will use a local car battery with a 12V lead to go to a tip positive connector to the camera...mounted on this little Vernon scope. My screen will be a little DVD player (solar-charged batteries during the day) or something similar.

With all this in view, I figure I can use AGC set pretty high and sense up to 64x or so (about a second) with very little noticeable distortion on the objects. Of course, I am not reaching deep...just prominent objects.

Anyone used these "reduced" sense up settings who can tell me what was reasonably usable??

Are there any other tips for "outback" use, power sources, etc. that you recommend.

Rony...if you read this, I think you have done this with a WATEC. I will be glad to glean from your experience also.

Thanks for reading.

Roland

#2 rodelaet

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Posted 03 January 2008 - 04:48 PM

I was not aware of this post at all. But Roland PM-ed me his question. My answer might be of general use to others as well. Here is my reply:

'These cameras can be used on a steady mount. It all depends of the field of view.
My experience : a 50mm f3,5 lens produces a field of 2 degrees with my Watec camera. No star trails are visible with integrations times up to 64 frames, even with an UHC filter in front of the chip. The desired object can be observed for several minutes before it runs out of the field of view.

A bigger scope might work as well : it gathers more light but shows a smaller field. Without tracking, the desired object will run out of the field very soon, regardless of the sensitivity of the camera. The smaller field will also make things more dificult to aim on an object. The use of a finder might become mandatory.

It is my experience that the non tracking mount works best for wide field views of the larger objects like big open clusters, milky way regions and the like.

I hope this helps. '

Clear skies,

Rony

#3 rolandskythree

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 07:49 PM

Thanks for posting, Rony. As I said to you, I will also experiment with a little classic refractor with reduced integration settings and relatively high AGC to see how things pan out. It will probably replicate your findings...that it works under the right conditions...but also be directly applicable to the MallinCAM series. I have not had the chance yet, but will do it soon.

Roland


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