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Controlling a Telescope with a RasPi

Raspberry Pi Science
Controlling a Telescope with a RasPi


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Cristos Vasilas added a Raspberry Pi with camera board to his telescope, and took great video!

My rPi camera board arrived from Element14 this week. I was anxious to get it connected to my rover, but once I saw the quality of the image it produced, I decided to use it as a wireless image/video capture for a Celestron NexStar 6″ Telescope. After a day of learning how to stream video and crafting an attachment to an eyepiece, I spent a couple of hours waiting for the clouds to clear and was able to catch some great video of the Moon and Saturn.

[via rPi]

8 thoughts on “Controlling a Telescope with a RasPi

  1. artjumble says:

    Title is misleading. This isn’t ‘control’, this is ‘take video with’.

    1. JennaSys says:

      My thought exactly. Though now that the RPi is already attached to the telescope, it’s pretty much begging to be used for remote postioning/focus of the telescope via http. I mean it’s *right there*!

  2. Daniel Escasa (@silverlokk) says:

    Thinking off the top of my head, and without following the link, isn’t a Raspberry something of an overkill? Wouldn’t an Arduino do the job?

    1. Viadd says:

      A $25 Raspberry Pi is indeed much more powerful than a $25 Arduino.

      However the useful things that an RPi givs you include a) wireless networking ($10 dongle) b) camera ($25 for a 5MPixel sensor board, not yet readily available) c) The ability to program in pracically any language programs of virtually unlimited complexity using standard libraries instead of having to shoehorn everything into 32kB of code and a few hundred bytes of RAM.

      c) is the big one for something as complicated as controlling a telescope.

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My interests include writing, electronics, RPGs, scifi, hackers & hackerspaces, 3D printing, building sets & toys. @johnbaichtal

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