Quote Originally Posted by Peter Velez View Post
Thanks Bill

The camera switch remains key to me.

The Maestro set up sounds very interesting but a bit clunky too. I'm impressed that you have it working. The added appeal for me is that it can accomodate another camera - I plan to piggyback a small refractor with a separate camera to take simultaneous photometry so this may be helpful. This is a "nice to have" rather than an essential.

Of course the costs starts to build with new software. I need to renew my ACP subscription (will do so very shortly Bob!) and have just upgraded Maxim. I expect I need another licence for Maxim as well as the Maestro licence.

I'm interested to hear whether you have ACP set up but not running or whether you still need to work on integrating ACP and the Maestro platform.

Look forward to hearing from you


I have the fiber fed internal calibration lamps set up through ACP. It is quite nice to control the K8056 relay board to turn on flat field and Thorium Argon lamp via an ACP tiddler. For on sky operations I am currently using 2 different MaxImDL licenses on separate computers currently. It has been painfully slow switching back and forth and observing by hand with the MaxIm interface without ACP. I hope to change that in the coming weeks. The DL folks overlooked adding camera cooler and filterwheel controls through Maestro. This was a show stopper for me with my TEC cooled Cameras. I hope to install the newest version next week that fixes that and then continue with the ACP integration. It is indeed a little clunky but the Shelyak eShel fiber Acquisition and guiding box has such a horribly small FOV that it can only be used on our 20-inch with a field acquisition camera attached to our finder scope. We have worked through eliminating most of the worst sources of flexure between both telescopes. Combined with MaxPoint and Pinpoint we can get on the small FOV of the slitviewer most everywhere in the sky. So to be clear we slew to the field and acquire it on our finder scope (large refractor) with a QHY9S camera. This has roughly a 0.8 x 0.6 degree squared FOV. We do a pinpoint solution and offset to center of field to get our target to the field center. This gets us on the main telescope Shelyak guider FOV. Then we use the Move To function to put the target star onto the slit position (which does not need to be at the center of this FOV). It may require a second offset about 25% of the time to get it on the slit but then we initiate guiding. Once we have a few guide exposures then we start the long spectrograph camera exposure (20 to 30 minutes so we do not collect to many cosmic rays). We have been successful getting down to about Mv=8th in a 1200s exposure with enough signal for some of our science needs.

I'll try to give an update when we finish the ACP customization.