I found out that I must have the shutter motor system up and running in addition to the rotation system in order for this to work. The system was hanging while waiting for the shutter.
I just installed a Nexdome rotator motor and it uses a USB cable to connect to the computer. I am using a MacBook with the OS X version of KStars (3.4.3).
INDI recognizes the rotator firmware, but then the handshake fails.
s.indi] - NexDome : "[DEBUG] Connecting to /dev/cu.usbmodem14101 @ 9600 "
[2020-09-17T08:35:26.991 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[DEBUG] Port FD 3 "
[2020-09-17T08:35:26.991 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[DEBUG] Connection successful, attempting handshake... "
[2020-09-17T08:35:26.993 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[DEBUG] CMD <@FRR> "
[2020-09-17T08:35:26.993 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - INDI Server: "2020-09-17T14:35:26: Driver indi_nexdome: Handshake lines currently set to 6"
[2020-09-17T08:35:26.993 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - INDI Server: ""
[2020-09-17T08:35:27.049 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[DEBUG] RES <:FR3.3.0> "
[2020-09-17T08:35:27.050 MDT INFO ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[INFO] Detected rotator firmware version 3.3.0 "
[2020-09-17T08:35:27.051 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[DEBUG] CMD <@FRS> "
[2020-09-17T08:35:30.057 MDT INFO ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[ERROR] Serial read error: Timeout error. "
[2020-09-17T08:35:30.057 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.indi] - NexDome : "[DEBUG] Handshake failed. "
[2020-09-17T08:35:30.058 MDT DEBG ][ org.kde.kstars.ekos] - "NexDome" is disconnected.
[2020-09-17T08:35:30.058 MDT INFO ][ org.kde.kstars.ekos] - "NexDome is disconnected."
I can use the manual buttons on the motor itself to move it, so It works. The issue is just the USB connection to INDI.
I have the Nexdome Rotation kit and hope to have it installed within two weeks. Once I get it installed I will test it with INDI/EKOS. I hope it works, as this will determine if I can run my observatory with EKOS or not.
In your Stellarmate documentation you state "You can alter the Proportional and Integral gains to improve the guiding performance if necessary.".
The problem is that I have no idea how to determine when an adjustment would help, nor what settings to change o5 what changes to make.
Is a gain of 0.5 good, or 2.5? How about 300? The numbers are arbitrary until I learn what it really does and how I can spot when changing these settings may help.
Is the left set of numbers for RA and the right side for DEC? I found no documentation that describes that.
Does anyone have any documentation or tips for adjusting these various settings in the Guide module?
Guide Box size - what size is best? What is the default?
Control parameters: How do I determine what settings to use, and when do I change them? What are the default values?
- Proportional (do I just set this according to the P: setting located after the Guide Rate?)
- Integral Gain (What is the default, when should I adjust, is the left setting for RA and the right for DEC?)
- Max and Min pulse. What are the keys to determine what these settings should be? What are the DEFAULT settings?
- Calibrait plat (new feature). What is the purpose and how do I read it?
PS: This was running on Ubuntu 18.04.
I have been using the stable release for about five months now without any major issues, and the automated meridian flip was flawless. It was great to wake up and find everything went well during the night.
But yesterday I downloaded the latest nightly and discovered that after s flip, the guided wouldn’t recalibrate correctly. It failed to reverse the direction and so couldn’t calibrate at all and so the imaging session was halted. I caught this one hour before twilight so I was able to fix it and get one more hour of work. I simply clicked on the swap option and EKOS was able calibrate again.
This never happened in the stable release. Is there a new option somewhere that I have to adjust?
Also the guider now has a calibration graph. Does this have a purpose and if so, how do I read it and use that info?
I have been using the Polar Alignment tool for months without any problem.
But tonight, something strange happened. I am using the same version of KSTARS over the last month, and had no problems until tonight - even though I have not updated KSTARS recently.
I started the Polar Alignment routine, and it came back and told me I was off by a couple of minutes. Nothing unusual there.
But the SCREEN was showing me being WAY off - almost out of range of the tool. I selected a star as usual, and the amount I needed to adjust was appropriate.
I did this three times, getting closer to perfectly aligned each time, but the screen was not zeroing me in. Very odd.
Only works for me on my MAC when I have images also saved on my Mac. If I keep them on the Ubuntu box at the scope, then I will not see them in the Summary Screen.
I wonder if this is a problem with polar alignment. I have been making sure my PA has been within a few Arc Seconds and noticed my drift virtually went away.
Last night I let my system run for 4 hours, taking images every minute and dithering every 4 frames. Four hours later the target was no more than a minute off.
Yes! This is what I have seen over and over. It seems to work well the first time auto-star is used, but then after that it usually fails after I move two a new field.
This happens of course after a meridian flip, but also happens when I just slew to a new target field.
The guide star box seems locks on to the same area from the previous search, even when that area is now devoid of stars. It should have searched the whole field again, but it doesn't.
The meridian Flip video I made was one success after three previous fails. It's random if the guider will find a new guide star, even when there are tons of stars. That little green box just doesn't seem to look in new areas after the first time.
I've noticed this for the last two years. It used to be worse, where I needed to re-align after 20 or 30 frames.
Now I still need two after 60-80 frames. The drift is certainly there (with as low as 2 pixel dithering every 4 exposures).
I currently use a wide FOV (348mm F/L) but I know once I jump to a narrow FOV this will be a serious issue.