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ETX-90 for computer controlled tracking of planes

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#1 contractorwolf



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Posted 19 June 2015 - 10:31 AM

Hello all,

I commonly work with arduino's and other microcontrollers and came up with a project idea that would use SDR (software defined radio) to get plane positions in the sky and use a computer controlled telescope in order to project the path of a plane and follow it with the telescope.  The math and calculations I am confident I can do but I am new to telescopes and would like some recommendations on what I should be looking for to best accomplish my goal.  I am guessing that I wouldnt need a full power telescope, but more of a "spotter" telescope?  Are there ones out there that have fine motor control that can communicate with a computer in a more open fashion?  I am guessing that i need something that I can tell it a specific angle to point (based on my GPS and the location of the plane).  Would something like this work?



Any helpful tips or advice would be very appreciated!


#2 MistrBadgr


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Posted 19 June 2015 - 08:46 PM

The one you have the link to might do the trick.  You may need to end up emulating the handset from a computer in order to get good enough control to do what you are talking about doing.


One thing to think about is how wide of a field of view do you think you need or what kind of magnification.  Are you going to be viewing the airplane through an eyepiece or are you wanting to use a camera of some sort attached to the scope.  That will impact your choice of scopes.


I am not sure how stable the system you are trying to create needs to be.  I think something like an ETX would be a good place to start.  If it is not stable enough and you decide you want to invest more money into the project, you could always go to a more expensive rig if it is worth it to you.


Hope this makes sense.  If not, holler and I will try again.


By the way, welcome to the forum!


Bill Steen

Bill Steen, Sky Hunters' Haven Observatory, Broken Arrow, Oklahoma

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