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About Whirlwind

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  1. Well the 834 is a mono camera to start and don't think there is a colour version so keep that in mind. CMOS is steadily replacing CCD in the market. Not really because one tech is better than another but other sectors want the (much) faster readout and apart from science dedicated businesses CCD has a limited demand. The 2600MC will give you a larger field of view, slightly more sensitive (especially in the blue) and faster capture rates with potentially tens of frames per second (which can help if you have a less well behaved mount and could use it for planetary). The 834 should have more stable noise characteristics which will be easier to calibrate out (CMOS generally has walking floor noise). CCDs also bin better than CMOS (for the former this reduces noise, but not really in the latter so much). The noise and full well depth when you read out the sensor are generally comparable at the same gain settings - however for CMOS you generally can alter these yourself so you get more flexibility if you want higher read noise, but larger well depths or vice versa. A CCD is fixed in this regards. *Calibrated* CCD images generally still win out from a noise perspective because of their stability So it largely depends on what you want to do with it and the scope that it will be attached to. If you want to do any science work (photometry, spectroscopy) the CCD still wins out (stable noise that is easier to calibrate). If you just want photos of large nebulae the new CMOS give a lot of area for the same value. On the other hand this helps mostly for mid to long focal length instruments as generally even a smaller chip can cover most objects with a short focal length telescopes. Also keep in mind what telescope you are going to use. If you use mid/long focal lengths (or are planned for in the future) then larger pixels can be better otherwise you are sampling too finely. Just to note in terms of the 834 unless you are using very short focal lengths the 694 might still be the better choice.
  2. The second image also is definitely not in focus so that isn't going to help with the quality of the image. It is hard work to start imaging with a long focal length telescope. Your set up needs to be that much more refined to be able to manage this. Getting a wedge might also help as you won't need to track in two axes at once, once properly set up. But really to start with you want a short focus length refractor. Nevertheless it is a long journey and for your starting images they are very good.
  3. There is also this company/person that is more active on IceinSpace. They are also based in Aus I believe so would give you ask to objects you would never see in the northern hemisphere. Remote Imaging and Telescope Hosting — Astrophotography by Martin Pugh (MPC Q56) (martinpughastrophotography.space) I thought there was another similar project that used Officina Stellare telescopes but can't seem to find them having a quick look so maybe they don't exist anymore. If you are just after data to play with (and are less interested in the imagining side) then maybe ask around for anyone that might want to share data with someone that does have a remote set up. It might not be 'professional' as the above options but a good relationship might give you more objects you wish to process (and the person with the equipment gets some support to the hosting costs). In comparison a subscription model depends on how many people are subscribing to that 'scope. If you mainly want to process galaxies but you join a nebula dominated group you might not get as many targets observed as you would like etc.
  4. Still, if you need to align it properly for flats after you have imaged then you still need one that is accurate (otherwise dust bunnies will be in different places for the flats etc).
  5. For WO products you generally measure from the base of thread (when screwed all the way on) to the location of the sensor. It's not the camera that needs the backfocus but the flattener. Most cameras/filterwheel/OAG set ups are designed with this length because it matches standard DSLR distances. The small amount of extra scope for adjustment is to allow filters to be included (which increase the optical distance between the reducer and sensor).
  6. I don't think it has been mentioned but another reason for a high quality rotator is to allow you to position accurately for flat if you image multiple targets over a night. This can be more or less pronounced dependent on where the rotator is located and the optical arrangement of the telescope. Otherwise you would have to fix the position at the beginning of the night and then leave it there regardless of what objects you image for that night (so you maintain the same rotation for the flats before/after the imaging run.
  7. As noted above it would be the returns system that will be most awkward as if you need to return something that would require customers to complete forms etc. Getting others to pay in advance (like ebay) of the customs duties makes me wonder how cost effective that would be when they will still be paying customs/VAT/shipping hassles/exchange rate risk and then the companies premium (staff costs) on top of this. Part of me wonders whether it would just be easier to pay the cost 'at the door' as it were if you were going that route (as it removes some risk costs). It largely depends on how reasonable postal companies for managing customs vs businesses. It will also be interesting to see how rules of origin will work that will need to be evidenced as well (so something available in the UK that can be bought but might bring higher tariffs in the EU if bought direct, and vice versa) as the trade rules have been deliberately designed to stop these backdoor shenanigans. This might apply to the StellaLyra/StellaMira range for example.
  8. Yes, the email I have indicates London.
  9. When I recently purchased something from Astrograph, Rupert mentioned that they have the ability to manufacture custom adapters as well.
  10. I think the Royal Mail guidance was anything posted after 28th December should be as they need to be compliant with any extra red tape on the day they arrive in the country. With everything transpiring together they couldn't guarantee that they would be able to deliver before the 1st after this date. I think now we have to consider any extra customs duties (plus the mandatory extra shipping charges that companies will apply) when that happens.
  11. Just remember that anything to the EU will now have to be sent with customs declarations form (that isn't a letter).
  12. Yes there are plenty of battles to fight both large and small. However, the point I am trying to make is that disposable items as a product needs to be a thing of the past. In the same way we view drink driving - it doesn't matter if you are slightly over the limit or hugely over the limit. Yes the latter has a much bigger risk but neither are acceptable. I go back to an earlier point that if we, to an extent, shrug our shoulders and say it is just a few items that doesn't change our mind set as a species (and also those that don't get that exemption will cry foul). To save the planet we need to view the same activities all in the same way. Yes, the drink cans disposal a huge issue to deal with. To some extent though we can have a bigger impact in the astronomy market as it's not huge and a small number of people are much more likely to have a big difference, as the market would have to adapt if a relatively small number decided it wasn't acceptable - if that is then replicated across many small markets (model building etc) then those trickle effects can be a torrent, just like the largest rivers start from very small rivulets or springs. For the drinks industry you need millions to change their habits (or be driven by governments) - that is not to say that change isn't needed.
  13. That's not really what I meant and it sounds like I did cause offence, which wasn't intended. The "straw man fallacy" arises when another tangential topic is used to justify an argument against another. In this case whether it is acceptable to have some disposable items because other industries do it elsewhere in larger quantities (and perhaps worse). The problem with this argument is that it pre-disposes that the principle of pollution is acceptable as long as it is in small amounts, but it is the accumulation of small amounts that could be larger overall compared to specific larger industries. That there are food packaging issues is a real issue but that doesn't mean we shouldn't be reducing environmental impacts elsewhere even if they have relatively minor impacts (as the accumulation of the improvement on all minor items can have a big impact). Fair point. Plastics aren't necessarily all bad though. It's been a bit of a myth in the last year that *all* plastics are bad. It's more how they are disposed. The problem is that a lot of plastics are of poor quality (cheap) or mixed types which makes recovery difficult/impossible. However, high quality easily recoverable plastics can be better environmentally than card, metal, glass etc as these can introduce more environmental costs than we realise (for example we cut down by far more trees in the world than we grow, the weight of such packaging is higher so transport environmental costs increase, extracting new metals and glass and is very energy inefficient; card/paper can rot generating methane etc etc). Thinking of plastics as a 'pariah' isn't really the way to go but shoudl be thought of as a tool to be used appropriately.
  14. In the politest way possible (as I'm not intending to cause offence), this argument is a "straw man fallacy". It is relating two different issues. The solarcan product is designed to be disposable. Drink cans and other food cartons for wet or degradable food *have* be disposable (or recyclable) as reusing them risks food contamination / food poisoning / rapid food degradation etc. Therefore for a lot of food products there is a need for them to be disposed/recycled to protect society (with the exception of some dry foods which you can use reusable containers for). As such food packaging is designed to keep the food safe. The solarcan on the other hand is designed to be disposable - it would be very easy to design it to be reusable (with only new photographic paper being needed). Secondly the principle of exceptions is why I think that we have a very long way to become sustainable. This one product might not seem much but then if this small product is given an exception then why not another, and another, and another, and then the large multinational companies want an exception. Ultimately this line of thinking leads us to no change at all.
  15. This assumes that any such event actually occurred at the time. It is more likely (in my view) that it became a myth from an event that did happen but was probably uncorrelated. Hence it is quite possible that the star being referred to was observed by Chinese star gazers - it is just that it was much later or much earlier than the mythological timeframe.
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