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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Charlottesville, VA
    Posts
    885

    Default All-Sky Camera Implementation and Tiddler

    Hi Everyone:

    I’ve wanted an all-sky camera for some time, and got around to implementing one. I purchased the Moonglow camera, and wrote a Tiddler for it. If you want to get it working, here are the instructions. Also, you can see below for a photo of the Tiddler. I’ve chosen to update the all-sky image every 60 seconds, and to include a 24-hour strip chart, that shows the sky conditions for the past day by taking a thin sample of the sky every minute.

    I chose not to set up a loop video of sky conditions to avoid consuming excess computing resources.


    Using the application that comes with the program, you can take the feed from the camera and create photos that the program outputs as a jpeg image and is refreshed as often as you like, and that you can access through ACP or put on the web.

    So here’s the basic steps:


    1) In ACP Doc Root, create a new folder entitled “AllSkyCam”.
    2) Open the software program “ASC Uploader” that comes with the camera. In the menu “Uploads” select “Custom Upload Tasks.” We’re going to create two images every minute.
    3) Image 1. In Custom Upload Tasks, click “New”. Description, Image. Upload interval, 1 minute. Offset, 0 seconds. Image Type, Raw image. Size, Raw. Quality, Normal. Overlay Timestamp and Directions. Destination, Copy to directory. Folder: Navigate to the folder in the ACP Doc Root, created in Step 1 above. Filename: “Image.jpg”. Click OK.
    4) Image 2. In Custom Upload Tasks, click “New”. Description, 24 Hour Chart. Upload interval, 1 minute. Offset, 0 seconds. Image Type, “Sum. of Day Image”. Size, Half-size. Quality, Normal. Do not stamp Timestamp, Directions or Labels. Destination, Copy to directory. Folder: Navigate to the folder in the ACP Doc Root, created in Step 1 above. Filename: “24Image.jpg”. Click OK.
    5) Go to the ACP Doc Root/AllSkyCam folder, and verify that the jpeg images are there. They will be updated every minute.
    5) OK, if you’ve gotten this far, you now have two jpeg files that will update every minute. Now you want to create the code to put this on an ACP web tiddler. Here’s the code:

    <script>
    return "[img[/AllSkyCam/Image.jpg?" +
    new Date().getTime() + "]]";
    </script>

    <script>
    return "[img[/AllSkyCam/24Image.jpg?" +
    new Date().getTime() + "]]";
    </script>

    <<RefreshTiddler Refresh "Refresh Display" 60>>

    6) Give your Tiddler a name. I named mine “All-Sky Camera”. If you want to include the Tiddler in your startup items, add this to your “StartupItems” tiddler:

    [[All-Sky Camera]]

    7) Below, you can see what the Tiddler looks like. Once you get the hang of ASC Uploader, the camera output files are highly customizable.

    All best,

    Rob
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Rob Capon
    (Self-appointed) "Executive Director"
    Stillhouse Mountain Observatory
    Charlottesville, VA
    ----------------------------------
    RCOS 12.5 with SBIG STL11000M
    Televue NP101is with SBIG ST8300
    Paramount ME with SkyX
    Techn. Innovations PD10 with Digital Domeworks
    Robofocuser
    ACP with MaximDL and FocusMax

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Charlottesville, VA
    Posts
    885

    Default

    Hi Again-

    I thought some of you might like to know how I mounted the camera. My observatory already has a pole for the cloud sensor. I used that as a mast for the camera.

    Moonglow offers a satellite dish mounting bracket, which has a flat side to mount on a wall. I purchased a pair of antenna mast bracket sets for $4.99 each at Lowes. Each set has a u-bolt and a saddle to seat the mounting bracket on the pole.

    Please see photos below, including a detailed photo of the mounting hardware.

    The camera is mounted above and behind the cloud sensor, so that the 7-watt dew heater on the camera will not impact the cloud sensor.

    Best,

    Rob
    Attached Images Attached Images

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2018
    Location
    Mount Airy, MD
    Posts
    66

    Default

    Rob

    I have the SX Oculus. Would your tiddler work ok with .fit files? I cannot find a way to save the Oculus images as .jpg files.

    Chuck

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    Virgil, NY
    Posts
    5,364

    Default

    Chuck,

    Rob is no longer an active member here - now for a couple of years. I'll send you a private message with his personal email, and you can contact him directly. I'm sure he won't mind, but I'm not sure how fresh his memory will be.

    I'll also look at the above messages and see if I can dope something out.
    Dick
    www.VirgilObservatory.us
    Pier-mounted Meade 12-inch SCT "classic"
    w. focal reducer to f/5.3 ~ FL 1630mm
    Optec TCF-S focuser
    SBIG CFW-8A and ST7-XME
    FOV ~ 15' x 10'
    H-alpha, BVRI, RGB & Clear filters
    MaxIm and, of course, ACP!
    AAVSO Code: BRIC

 

 

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