Thayer Observatory

My observatory is a 10′ x 14′ roll off roof observatory.  It is controlled by an i7 based PC and contains a pier for my Atlas EQ-G Mount.  I perform my astrophotography using a Canon 6D, on a 0.85 reducer, connected to a Skywatcher 100mm ED APO scope.

For guiding, I use a 80mm short tube from Orion with a Starshoot Autoguider and PHD2 Guiding.  The autoguider feeds into my mount for correction.  I also use PlateSolver2 for plate solving.  PlateSolver2 is a heck of lot easier to center your objects that using a hand controller.

I use cartes du ciel for my  planetary software and I use Voyager for capturing images.

For Autofocus I use the Pegasus Astro Motor Focus Kit / Controler v3.

Polar alignment, while not really needed a lot, is accomplished using a PolarMaster which is mounted in place of the polar finder scope that is integrated into my mount.

Dew control is accomplished using a home grown system I am still developing.  I think I will call it Dew Bee.

For Weather control I use a homegrown arduino system that measures Ambient Temperature, Sky Temperature (This along with Ambient temperature can tell us when clouds are present), Barometric Pressure, Humidity (This along with Ambient temperature can tell us dew point as well), Light level (Can tell us when the sky is dark), Rain levels, and Wind Speed and Direction.

For roll off roof motors, I use an Aleko AR2750 integrated with my weather station via arduino relays and Voyager.

For sequencing and observatory control, I use Voyager and it handles everything great.

For security I have a home brew system developed that is comprised of cameras, and various sensors.  WARNING! Don’t try breaking in as your picture will be immediately spread across the internet! 🙂

Here are a few shots of the observatory.