NEOCP objects in TheSkyX

6 years 4 months ago #99860 by albertw
NEOCP objects in TheSkyX was created by albertw
Hi,

I use TheSkyX to control my mount and camera and there is no easy/free way to get objects posted on the MPC NEOCP into TheSkyX. Copying and pasting ephemeris or orbit data gets tiresome very quickly! Once the objects are there it becomes easier to select suitable objects and image them.

So I wrote a little app to download the NEOCP and create asteroid databases for TheSkyX, and also observations for find_orb. If you have a version that includes the TCP server then you can also use it to get the alt, az, rate and position angle.

Download: github.com/albertw/NEOCPhelper/releases/...v1.0/NEOCPHelper.jar
You'll need a recent enough version of Java to run it.

Source code at github.com/albertw/NEOCPhelper

Thanks to Michael O'Connel for helping out with testing. Actually this may only be of interest to myself and Michael as others who do follow up asteroid observations probably are using ACP or the likes!

Cheers,
~Al

Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/

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6 years 4 months ago #99866 by michaeloconnell
Replied by michaeloconnell on topic NEOCP objects in TheSkyX
Al,
Thanks for posting this. Been very busy lately.
Hopefully it is helpful to others here too.
I have tried both the small and large functions and they both work.
Thanks very much for producing this tool.
Very useful.
Just one question: How should I use the FindOrb file?
Thanks,
Michael.

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6 years 4 months ago #99870 by albertw
Replied by albertw on topic NEOCP objects in TheSkyX
Hi Michael,

Download Find Orb from www.projectpluto.com/find_orb.htm and you can load the observations file into that.

Find Orb then uses the observations to estimate an orbit, and you can see the residuals of individual observations from the computed orbit. So if you add your own observations (MPC format) to the file you can see how your observations have refined the orbit, and also from the residuals you can see how far 'off' your observations are from the computed orbit. Or if you have a couple of nights of observations you can use just them to model 'your' orbit and see how that compares to the orbit with other observations.

It's interesting to play with but unless you deeply understand celestial mechanics and modelling probably not that much practical use.

Cheers,
~Al

Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/

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5 years 7 months ago #101867 by albertw
Replied by albertw on topic NEOCP objects in TheSkyX
JavaFX was starting to do my head in, so I've reverted to something I know a bit better and rewrote it in python and tk. I don't have a nice packaged up version yet, but if you have python installed this should run fine.

What I've added this time is a very experimental imaging scheduler, so you give it a list of targets, a number of exposures, and an exposure time and it goes and images them using your existing settings in theSkyX for the camera and telescope.

It's restricted to TheSkyX and the corresponding camera add on since that's what I use.

Code is at github.com/albertw/AutoSkyX/ several bugs, lots of additions needed, but I thought I'd share in case anyone is interested

Albert White MSc FRAS
Chairperson, International Dark Sky Association - Irish Section
www.darksky.ie/

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