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Auto tracking of ISS - help needed please

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Ideally I want to locate and then auto track the ISS with my Celestron CPC925

Is it possible and how do you do it?

Many thanks.



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from the Keplerian elements of the ISS,
knowing the Inclination, the Longitude of the Assending Node, and the Argument of the Periapsis,
you could re-align your polar axis such that it coincides with the inertial frame of the ISS, and then track with your RA motion.
But, this can only be achieved at a specific time, determined by the Mean Anomaly at a specific Epoch,
and the earth's rotation would carry you out of sync after that moment,
so you would need to mount your telescope on an equatorial platform to de-rotate everything,

 Yes, maybe buy one of them what Steve pointed to !

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Not easy if it can be done.

The ISS is firstly moving the wrong way, so in effect nothing "standard" has a chance.

Next it is not moving at a "standard" angular velocity, so again nome of the "normal" options apply.

I would guess that the normal CPC software has no chance at all.

You may get somewhere if you controlled the CPC via a software package.

The CPC handset and software is very simple compared to the abilities of a laptop with planetarium software.

How good any of them are I do not know.

There also comes the simple fact that to see the ISS you would first have to get it in view and in the relatively short time that it is visile that may not be easy. I would have doubts on having sufficent time to see it appear, get the scope on it, change the eyepiece to a higher magnification and keep it in view for any realistic time. You generally have 2 minutes or less from appearance to disappearance and on something as quick as the ISS that is not long to do everything.

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In case anyone was wondering -

my comments about Keplers etc last night was a jest leading up to the punch line 'wot Steve said' !

poor I know but it was late at night and I was waiting for the answer as well as A40 !

Cos somewhere on the forum someone did describe how he tracked and imaged the ISS,

I wish I was better at the search function :( , , ,

I think I remember that he parked the scope on a known/predicted starfield and waited till ISS entered, then took up the chase.

I guess he must have used software to control the scope cos he was working a camera as well, else he had more hands and eyes than me !!

Someone will be along soon with the answer , , ,

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Many thanks for your feedback.

I will have a go manually first through the finder scope and then with a 40mm eyepiece (59x mag)

Fingers crossed for a gap in the clouds, you never know

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I'm also interested in tracking the ISS, here's  some info from a post on another site.

The Sirius/Atlas/HEQ5/EQ6 class of mounts aren't extremely expensive and can use EQMOD combined with Satellite Tracker software, and Satellite Tracker itself was developed for LX-200 type scopes and will also do some Celestron mounts.

If the mount supports dual axis tracking rate changes like the Synta SynScan items above as well as certain LX-200 mounts, then all it takes is a GOTO ahead of the trajectory, position to intercept, then constant rate changes to keep the satellite in the field. Some mounts, however, require "leap frogging" with computed GOTOs to get ahead and let the item drift through the field.

Either way, it's doable at moderate prices as well. More expensive mounts can certainly perform the task as well. I'm using EQMOD with my Atlas EQ-G for ISS tracking.

Hope this helps.

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   To track it, yes - special equipment needed but to snap a pic through a scope, check out the links I posted in the similar thread in this forum.

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