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About Aramcheck

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  1. Our Baader 8-24mm zoom has made viewing sessions a lot easier, as there's no need to fiddle about swapping eyepieces & swapping over light-pollution or ND filters. However, on the Skywatcher 200pds the weight has proved a bit difficult to achieve balance & get the eye-piece in a reasonable position. Also a little re-focusing is still needed too when switching magnification from either extreme.
  2. You can also get it done roughly in the daytime on whatever the most distant object you can see - preferably TV aerial / chimney etc and then fine tune it at night on a bright star like Vega. i.e. if you can centre a star in the finderscope, as long as that gets it somewhere in the field of view with your lowest power eyepiece, you can then centre the star in the eyepiece & then tweak the finderscope to bring that into alignment.
  3. @Scooot Here's a direct link to the Austrian government pdf: https://www.land-oberoesterreich.gv.at/files/publikationen/us_Leitfaden_Guidelines_Outdoor_lighting_english.pdf Hope all goes well! Cheers Ivor
  4. Thanks again David - a good idea about connecting a car bulb & measuring the voltage over time & I'll test the discharge rate as soon as I get the chance. I only got the Power Tank as it was the one recommended for the mount by FLO, so didn't really research it beforehand. The 14.8v is from the mains charger which came with it, and according to the instructions it's best charged at between 14.5 and 15.5 volts. It does also say that if the unit is used for too long after the yellow warning light comes on, recharging could take up to 20 hours.... It'll be interesting to see whether the 17 Ah holds up... the mount is spec'd at 3A so should in theory last about 5 hours 40mins. Cheers Ivor
  5. Thanks David. I'm getting 12.18 volts on a multimeter but 11.5 from within the Synscan "Utility" menu. Hopefully I'll find out tomorrow night if the weather forecast doesn't change and we get some clear skies. The first couple of times we've used the Power Tank, I put it on charge immediately after use, but as only the "Fully Charged" LED came on, I didn't leave it on for long because of the 'instructions' warning about not exceeding the recommended charge times ("Explosion hazard"). However on the last session I noticed at the end of the night that the Yellow "Needs Charging" came on & I'm not sure how long that had been on whilst I was imaging that night. I probably then made a mistake not recharging it at the end of session, instead putting it on charge the next day. Cheers Ivor PS: The DC adapter for charging the tank is reading 14.8 v, so I know that is ok.
  6. Austrian Government – “Austrian Guidelines For Outdoor Lighting” (2019) https://www2.landoberoesterreich.gv.at/internetpub/InternetPubPublikationDetail.jsp?SessionID=SID-8EA6F1BE-98F8EEDF&xmlid=Seiten%2F115999.htm&pbNr=300750&dest=ooe (Covers quite a bit of stuff, but includes a stat. saying that in a study of 248,000 UK burglaries, 48% had security lighting fitted) British Medical Journal – Journal Of Epidemiology & Community Health – “The Effect of reduced street lighting on road casualties and crime in England and Wales: controlled interrupted time series analysis” (2014) https://jech.bmj.com/content/69/11/1118 (This is the biggest / most exhaustive study I've seen on Crime and Road Safety - data from 62 local authorities & 16,000 km of road) DEFRA – “A Review Of Local Authority Road Lighting Initiatives Aimed At Reducing Costs, Carbon Emissions & Light Pollution” (2011) http://randd.defra.gov.uk/document.aspx?Document=LAStreetLightingInitiatives(Final140911).pdf (Older, but still some interesting stuff. After a pilot LED lighting dimming scheme in Leeds, 80% of residents hadn't noticed the reduction in light (20% at 9pm / 50% at midnight!), 89% thought there would be no effect on traffic accidents, 77% no effect on crime, and 79% had either not noticed or felt that the dimmed lights would make any difference to their perception of safety) Home Office – “The Influence Of Street Lighting On Crime And Fear Of Crime” (1991) http://www.celfosc.org/biblio/seguridad/atkins.pdf (also a lay summary: “The Effect Of Better Street Lighting On Crime And Fear: A Review” http://library.college.police.uk/docs/hopolicers/fcpu29.pdf (This highlights that although lighting has no effect on crime, it has a definite effect in reducing the fear of crime) Campbell Systematic Reviews – “Effects Of Improved Street Lighting On Crime” (2008) http://mws-73973.mws3.csx.cam.ac.uk/people/academic_research/david_farrington/light.pdf (If I remember correctly, this is a somewhat flawed study which has been criticised on statistical grounds & according to Private Eye had strong links to the lighting industry - and it found a reduction in crime in both daytime and night!) It's a shame Basildon Council don't seem to have made a Climate Emergency declaration - if they have then there is a tonne of evidence in science journals on the effect lighting has on animals & in particular insects, which have declined by about 75% over the last 30 or so years.... [Happy to post a list of links if you want] Thanks for taking the time to write to the council. You might think it doesn't get noticed, but the truth is hardly anybody complains about light pollution. Cheers Ivor
  7. By chance I came across a review of the Vaonis "Stellina" smart scope in Nov. 2018 edition of Astronomy Now. The scope focuses its light directly onto a 6.4 megapixel CMOS sensor and the image is relaid to a smart phone/tablet app which makes use of 'image live stacking' using 'target-adapted processing to obtain the best clarity'. From the looks of things, this is capable of displaying nebula colour, though personally I wouldn't want one, even if I could afford it:- https://youtu.be/4du2xxYXfhM
  8. Where the two illustrations meant to indicate the same position? To me the top one looks like it's 2:30 and the lower reticule one is 1:20? Cheers Ivor PS: BTW Graeme, you might be interested in the Leeds Astronomical Society - our next observing session (clouds permitting) is on the 22nd http://www.astronomyleeds.org.uk/index.php (The 160th event on the 9th is sold out however)
  9. Re-processed using a trial version of Pixinsight...
  10. 2nd attempt at DLSR photography from Sunday night - M27 at 60 x 90 sec frames(!). Shot JPEG's + RAW, JPEG's didn't look promising with 'sausage shape' drift, but set DSS to 80% & it stacked... Levels tweaked in GIMP and then downsized to 8-bit TIFF, Levels then re-tweaked in Photoshop 5 in my Windows XP virtual PC. Cheers Ivor
  11. Thanks David / Jiggy 67. After leaving the battery on charge all day, from the Synscan handset Utility menu I'm getting a voltage of 11.5v, which is the same voltage I get when using a Mains power supply, so I guess it's fully charged... When set to "On" the "ready to use" is lit, and when set to "Charge" both the "charging" and "fully charged" are lit. Cheers Ivor
  12. I recently bought a Sky-Watcher / Celestron PowerTank 17Ah. When recharging it, after a while both the red 'charging' and the green 'fully charged' LED's are illuminated... Should I leave it until the 'charging' LED goes out, or is it already fully charged when both LEDs are lit? Many thanks in advance Ivor
  13. It is a revelation... and it's sad to think that something like 85% of people in the UK have never seen the Milky Way. If only the night sky was classified as an 'Area Of Outstanding Beauty' / 'Site of Special Scientific Interest'... On the plus side, our holidays these days are heavily determined by the light pollution map & the phase of the moon. Cheers Ivor
  14. At least here in the UK I think it is worth raising the issue of light pollution locally. I wrote to my local MP who has mentioned the current biodiversity crisis (insect numbers declining by about 75% in the last 30 or so years), and got quite a positive response which included the phrase " I totally agree that light pollution is a very important issue. " And with many UK councils declaring a 'climate emergency', now is a good time to raise the issue locally of Artificial Light At Night (ALAN) on the ecosystem.(*) It is horrifying seeing those lights on the bridge which must be creating havoc with the wildlife above & below the water... Cheers Ivor (*) Sadly I don't think they're too bothered about the other aspects, such as generating an interest of science in children & the influence the night sky has had on our development at as a species - i.e. ancient navigation, timekeeping & gradual understanding of the universe)
  15. I prefer the 9x50 but on our Skywatcher 130dps I haven't been able to get it to balance with our 9x50 so have to resort to the supplied 6x30... The 9x50 however was fine on our previous Skywatcher 130 OTA which had longer tube length. (Also on the 130dps I had to switch from a Telrad to Rigel Quickfinder as there was insufficient OTA length above the tube rings to fit the Telrad base) I find it much easier with the right-angled finder scope, so good to know there's an option for that on the 6x30! The 9x50 is 9 time magnification / 50mm diameter & the 6x30 is likewise 6 times magnification & 30mm dia. Cheers Ivor
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