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Old 13-11-2019, 06:39 PM
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Free stacking, solving and CCD tilt inspector software

I have recently started using ASTAP, a really great free astronomy software that can do a range of things like plate solving, stacking and contains some really useful tools that can diagnose tilt and can be used to optimise CCD distance when focal reducer/flatteners are used.
I was not aware of this software before so thought that I would alert others to it's existence.
The astrometry solver part of this software has just been integrated as a "plug-in" in EKOS/KStars where it is used in place of the astrometry.net solver. The developer has been providing a lot of advice to KStars users to get them started.
In this setting it is impressively fast, solving in 1-5 seconds (astrometry.net can take minutes to solve).
So for anyone using KStars for automating astrophotography I would really recommend checking it out.
As a stand alone program the stacking and CCD tilt/rotation tools are also worth checking out.
Here is the link to the home page (works on most platforms).
https://www.hnsky.org/astap.htm

Mike
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Old 14-11-2019, 08:10 PM
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I just started playing with it yesterday myself. The tilt calculation could be really handy for setting up, it showed me that I really do have one that I suspected my guider was causing and I will have to do something about it.
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Old 14-11-2019, 09:11 PM
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Hi Paul,

Yep it appears pretty useful and has a nice FITS viewer with some good debayering capabilities. Its solving speed is very quick.

Mike
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Old 14-11-2019, 11:37 PM
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I'm intrigued by the CCD Inspector,

Would this work on a CMOS sensor as well? I seem to have some issues with my imaging train (EOS70d coupled to Meade APO) and I am wondering if this would assist me in determining if it is camera/adapter tilt or (hopefully not) a problem in my scope..

Cheers
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Old 15-11-2019, 05:48 AM
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I think CCD inspector has become a generic term, I tried it out last night on images from my CMOS cam with no issues. By the time this software sees them it is just pixels, regardless of the source.


I was first interested in it as it is supposed to plate solve very quickly and be less finicky that PS2 settings wise.
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Old 15-11-2019, 06:06 AM
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Interesting.. I will try it asap.
It may be useful for solving my issue with C11+0.63x FR.. and focal surface curvature?.

Last edited by bojan; 15-11-2019 at 06:40 AM.
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Old 15-11-2019, 03:42 PM
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A quick example of what it provides, for some reason at least on my system the tilt and curvature numbers go off the edge of the image and are a little hard to read.


You can see from this that my ED72 is just about spot on tilt wise and in this case, field curvature is not too bad, but the edges are actually in better focus than the middle. The SCT however has a lot more curvature and some more tilt, in this case more than anything else caused by collimation needing a touch up. My guilder is not rigid enough either which I think is the cause of most of the tilt that there is in the ED72 image.
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Old 16-11-2019, 08:50 PM
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This looks great ! i recently tried using the free MaxPilote suite for tilt inspection but found it confusing to use and put it aside for the time being.

I know I have tilt issues and bought a Gerd-Neumann tilt corrector - I just need the software like this to measure it.
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