New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

All the latest news about new features and improvements to SharpCap
Borodog
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#41

Post by Borodog »

Hi Robin,

Just wanted to say that I am very excited to try this new capability. I have been extremely ill for months and unable to image, and now that I finally can, I have been socked in with clouds. Hopefully soon!
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#42

Post by admin »

Hi,

sorry to hear that you have been unwell :(

Here's hoping your skies clear soon and that you have good results!

cheers,

Robin
lazyimager
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#43

Post by lazyimager »

First of all, Sharpcap is great software! Very excited about moon mosaic. Used for first time on the first quarter moon. 20 panels at 1000 frames each. Camera did stop recording in middle of first run. Not sure why.

A suggestion for a feature. It would be nice if one could deselect panels that are unwanted. For example, if I just wanted to image a six panel image near the terminator, once the mosaic is laid out, I could click on the panels I don’t want and deselect them and those would be skipped, that would be nice. It would save some time and lots of disk space.

Still, really nice addition for us that do lunar!
Darrell
Borodog
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#44

Post by Borodog »

I had a chance to FINALLY try out the lunar mosaic tool the past two nights. All I can say is WOW. Incredible work. Thank you so much for this.

See this thread on Cloudy Nights for the first night's results:

https://www.cloudynights.com/topic/9039 ... ixel-moon/
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#45

Post by admin »

Hi,

just to let people know that the latest SharpCap 4.1 update (4.1.11711) contains a new, experimental, auto alignment option for both solar and lunar mosaics. This works by detecting the edge of the solar/lunar disc in the image, then moving the mount and seeing how the detected disc moves. I will try to post some more details (including a video) soon.

cheers,

Robin
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#46

Post by admin »

Hi,

here's a recording of me testing out a pre-release version of mosaic auto-align. There are some inaccuracies in this version due to a bug where the movement to the third align point was sometimes calculated wrongly - that's now fixed.

This link will start the video at the beginning of the final alignment test before I run the actual mosaic :

https://youtu.be/I__w6O_f7FE?si=XIm2sFogWmPSxELr&t=177

You can see that the auto-align code outlines the moon's disc with a nice green circle when it is confident that it has found a well defined disc. At times is shows a red circle which indicates a poor disc, or no circle at all and a (sometimes slightly cryptic) message. The messages when a disc cannot be found have been improved for the released version too!

The alignment procedure needs to measure the disc at 3 different sets of mount co-ordinates. You should start with the edge of the disc clearly in view and detected in green. SharpCap will measure that disc, then move in RA to a new position - sometimes the new position puts the edge of the disc out-of-view or puts the whole field of view on the moon/sun - don't worry if that happens, after a few seconds SharpCap will try another position. Once the results of the RA move have been measured, SharpCap will repeat for a declination move, and that completes the alignment. Don't worry if you have an AltAz mount - it should still work!

When the alignment is complete you can move to the next page and test the alignment by using the four 'Goto .... Edge' buttons - if the alignment is correct then those should put the middle of the selected edge of the disc in the middle of the camera view (at the crosshairs).

cheers,

Robin
Borodog
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#47

Post by Borodog »

Excited to try this. When I tried the "guided" method last week I somehow screwed it up by misinterpreting what "top", "bottom", "left", "right" meant. :oops: I interpreted them to mean the north, south, east, and west of the Moon on the sky. In my defense I think it was the orientation of the Moon in the preview image of the wizard that tricked me. That's my excuse, anyway.
Borodog
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#48

Post by Borodog »

Robin,

Is there some way to use the Feature Tracking Calibration step to determine how much backlash compensation to entire into the lunar mosaic tool?

Thanks.
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#49

Post by admin »

Hi,

not really from the feature tracking - the easiest way to estimate mount backlash is probably a direct measurement... You could do it as follows

* Move in -ve dec to a round value (say +25 dec exactly)
* Now move in +ve dec at a medium/slow rate and note the readout when the image starts to move - say +25 08 00 - that would mean you have 8 minutes of arc backlash in the dec direction.
* You can repeat for RA backlash, but remember that the measurement is in minutes of arc, not minutes of RA, so multiply by 15.

Putting in a higher than necessary figure won't hurt (within reason), so you could also start by setting a relatively large figure like 30 minutes of arc (0.5 degree), and then wind it down as long as you still see all movements finishing with an offset in a consistent direction.

cheers,

Robin
Borodog
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Re: New Feature : Moon Mosaic Planner

#50

Post by Borodog »

Thanks Robin.
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