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Galactic2000
2007-Dec-25, 11:35 PM
Hi All,

I just finished the first tests of my ALL SKY CAMERA, under the worst conditions(Full Moon in the City of Dayton, Ohio).

I simply set it up on a tripod in the back yard, UFOCapture Software has a masking function to mask out objects in the FOV this helps to avoid false detections due to moving trees and house/car lights, etc. Its amazing how it can automatically differentiate bewteen Planes, birds, insects, and Meteors!

I had to tweak the sensitivity a bit due to the New Wide Angle 180* Fujinon L163VDC4P Rainbow Fisheye Lens, DC IRIS, attached to the Newer Watec (WAT-902H2 Supreme Camera) Super Low light Chip Camera, running UFOCapture Software.

It will be Mounting on the roof of the House, thus be above all the structures, lights, and most trees, but I had to test it out first to make sure it will all worked properly before braving the climb.. It will be mounted in a Clear Optical Acrylic Dome and PVC pipe, mounted at the APEX of the House.

It will be able to record any Bollides & Fireballs, Sprites, Lightning, and fainter Meteors!

I set it up to run all of Christmas Eve until about 7:15 am this morning.

I captured 9 meteors total ranging from +2 to -2 magnitude, even in this strong Full Moonlight, half of them were captured between 5:00am and 7:00am this morning. What a nice Christmas gift!

The Camera will likely get to stars down to 3rd or 4th mag on Moonless nights. Can't wait till we get clear skies during New Moon!

JAICOA
2007-Dec-26, 05:55 AM
A very interesting piece of equipment, Very informative presentation and nice wide angle shot with the lens.

Veeger
2007-Dec-27, 10:34 PM
Hi G2K,
That's a very interesting camera. Very cool. But it raises lots of questions for me. For example how does capture the views without star trails and what about the moon, did you mask it or did the software? Can you post a link with some details on the camera and software? I'd like to read something about it.

Best,
-Veeger

Galactic2000
2007-Dec-28, 04:40 AM
HI Veeger,

The software can mask what ever you like in the FOV, the scintillation masks, the stars twinkling, the moon, the planets, etc. The exposure you see is only a few seconds or less total, so you will not see star trails. No celestial tracking is required for this work.

UFOcapture Software was written by Sonota in Japan. Its very powerful software & the best thing out there for this type of work!

Check out the english version of the website at http://www.sonotaCo.com



Here are the answers to some other questions posed by other users of this thread.

1.) Does it "snap" a picture when it detects movement?

IT IS ALWAYS TAKING PICS AT 30 FRAMES A SECOND IT HAS ABOUT A 10SEC BUFFER, IF IT DETECTS MOTION AND BRIGHTNESS CHANGES, IT STARTS TO RECORD PRIOR TO THE EVENT GETTING THE FRAMES BEFORE THE EVENT FROM THE BUFFER, AND WILL RECORD UNTIL THERE IS NO LONGER MOVEMENT OR THE OBEJECT DISSAPEARS.


2.) How are you alerted that a picture has been taken?

I USUALLY JUST CHECK IT ALL IN THE MORNING, BUT UFOCAPTURE SOFTWARE DOES HAVE A SOUND ALERT FEATURE, OR IT CAN AUTOMATICALLY E-MAIL OR FTP YOUR THE IMAGES VIA THE WEB, IF YOUR AWAY ON BUSINESS OR VACATION. IT ALSO HAS A SCHEDULER TO AUOTMATICALLY TURN ON AND OFF WHEN EVER YOU LIKE.


3.) Do you retreive the info wireless or do you have to run a cable from the camera to your comp.?

MY SETUP IS HARDWIRED, BUT I DON'T SEE WHY IT WOULD NOT WORK WITH A WIRELESS SETUP ATTACHED TO THE WAT902H2 CAMERA, THE PROGRAM "UFOCAPTURE" DOES NOT CARE AS LONG AS IT GETS A USB, FIREWIRE OR COMPOSITE VIDEO SIGNAL.

Were do I get basic plans to build the housing for an ALL SKy CAM?

Go to Chris Petersons website/cloudbait observatory at http://www.cloudbait.com/projects/allskycamera.html

Note:
My camera is a different model(more sensitive) from the one posted at cloudbait, but most of the PVC housing, lens, and parts to make one are basically the same.

GOOD LUCK,

Hopefully this helps,

Swift
2007-Dec-28, 05:33 AM
That is really cool! I'd love to see future pics.

(small side note - my 9000th post - I need a life ;) )

Galactic2000
2007-Dec-29, 06:12 AM
Hi All,

Many have asked how I made my ALL SKY CAM.......

here is a link to my ALL SKY CAMERA construction photos,
http://mvas.org/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=1125

The details are below the numbered photos....

france113
2008-Jan-02, 02:49 AM
thats really cool!
heres a weird question.
can i use a webcam to do that?
and did you write the names of planets constelations, or the software did?

Galactic2000
2008-Jan-02, 03:44 AM
thats really cool!
heres a weird question.
can I use a webcam to do that?
and did you write the names of planets constelations, or the software did?

Yes UFOcapture will work with any USB webcam or Firewire camera, or composite video capture device. Unfortunately, a typical webcam will not be sensitive enough to capture meteors, or sprites.

This is why we use the Sony exview video cameras or Watec 100n or 902H2 supreme video cameras, they typically have .0005 to .0003 low light lux ratings, good enough to capture meteors.

Now a typical webcam will work for security in a well lit area or for daytime stuff.

The constellation, planet, text labels were placed in the photo by me, simply to illustrate what we are looking at.

I would just get a simple PC164 exview video camera from supercircuits.com, they are the cheapest(~$100) that will work on meteors, the Watecs are more sensitive and less noisy but they cost more ($300)

hopefully this helps!

france113
2008-Jan-02, 11:59 PM
oh great
i might build one :D

Thanks & Happy New Year!

france113
2008-Jan-03, 07:43 AM
hmm i just connected my cam to my laptop to test out the program, but it showed an error saying No compatible media found

Galactic2000
2008-Jan-03, 01:31 PM
Note: the software will not work with MS Vista, do to non constant Io port issues.
Ufocapture only works with win XP or win 98, and you need to have some type of video capture card or device installed, in order for the program to recognize your camera.

Best Regards,
John

france113
2008-Jan-10, 08:21 AM
yeah im on xp and the drivers are installed

Galactic2000
2008-Jan-10, 01:26 PM
yeah im on xp and the drivers are installed

Do you have the latest MS DirectX installed?

This is the the link for the required Hardware/software for UFOcapture to work on your XP system.

http://sonotaco.com/soft/NSOG/hard.html

Hopefully this helps,

awyong
2008-Jan-10, 01:58 PM
wow! and other toy to play.. it will break my bank.. ha ha!

Clear Sky!