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Thread: Loving ACP

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  1. #1

    Default Loving ACP

    I purchased a license for ACP back in October or so. Fussing with my new RCOS and AP1200 and all of their capabilities absorbed a lot of time. Additionally I had already climbed the learning curve with CCDAP and CCDC, so I was hesitant to dive into ACP.

    During the past moon lit weeks, I've jumped in with both feet, and have to say it is a phenomenal product. Once the structure is understood it is easy to become very excited my its rock-solid performance and flexibility. Little things make a huge difference, for example my guiding has simply never been as good or trouble free.

    The documentation is extremely comprehensive too.

    Are there some things I'd like to see? Sure, an easy way to asses the imaging merits of a draft plan (object rise and set time, time at certain airmass parameters, daylight, moonlight, flat start time, etc.) and change it on the fly would be nice.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
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    Mesa, AZ
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    John --

    Thanks a ton for the kind words. I really appreciate it.

    With respect to the "merits", I'll talk with you about Scheduler. The whole point of it is to remove the burden of planning the timing of observations, and instead simply specify the constraints (airmass, daylight, moonlight... all the stuff you asked for and more!)
    -- Bob

  3. #3

    Default

    You are welcome Bob, and I will try out Scheduler tonight!

  4. #4
    Join Date
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    Wow, great! FYI, before diving in, uou probably should get a little background on it! It's hardly trivial :-)
    -- Bob

  5. #5

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    Hi Bob,

    I downloaded a trial of scheduler and found that paper in the docs.

    This _really_ looks great.

  6. #6
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    Awesome! Wait till you see Scheduler V3 which is in beta now :-)
    -- Bob

  7. #7

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    The Beta is what I'm playing with now

    It is awfully tempting to plan out everything from now until the end of the month and take the weakest part of my system out of the equation....me!

    This really takes automated imaging to a whole new level, being able to queue up everything and let an application apply priorities and constraints to take care of the details. I don't even have to know when the moon rises for LRGB scheduling anymore, or when it is too close for narrowband.

    I'm a little dumb-struck with the possibilities.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Denny View Post
    Awesome! Wait till you see Scheduler V3 which is in beta now :-)

  8. #8

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    Bob,

    Scheduler is another great product. I bought a license today after trial-runs all weekend. I watched it dance through several targets I had planned with ease, halting at horizon and moon constraints on que.

    I now have it set up to do 180 images during the remainder of the month!

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    Yeah! Go get 'em!
    -- Bob

  10. #10

    Default

    It's a neat tool. The simulator capability is very useful.

    For the LRGB and Narrowband imaging I do it has helped me structure my observations in a way that best leverages Scheduler.

    Basically the smaller the elapsed/needed time of the plan, the more Scheduler is able to flex its muscles. I target 45 minutes or so for a package of work. There is probably a scientific way to figure out the optimum plan "packet" size, but I'm afraid its beyond me. Since I'm not aware of any significant overhead time for a plan (absent a re-focus), it seems that "smaller is better" is the rule of the day. So a plan of 6*15 minute images is not as "good" for leveraging Scheduler as 2 plans of 3*15 minute images. 6 Plans of 1*15 minute times would be even better. Scheduler handles all the other variables associated with sequencing plans for optimum results (slews, etc).

    Am I on the right track Bob?
    John K
    St. Augustine, FL
    Weather: http://www.cloudappeal.com
    Images: http://www.pbase.com/jaxdilation

 

 

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