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SoundStepper

A software for ATM telescope automation

5.0 Stars (1)
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Windows

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Description

SoundStepper is a 100% software telescope controller, for Windows, that uses audio hardware to control step motors in real time. All it requires is an external analog current amplifier to operate.

SoundStepper Web Site

Categories

Astronomy, Robotics

License

Public Domain

Features

  • SoundStepper can control up to 4 motors (RA, Dec, focuser and field rotator) of a equatorial or altazimuthal-mounted telescope.
  • SoundStepper can control any type of equatorial-mounted telescopes with step motors. Manual-pointing mounts (ex: barndoor, poncet platforms, "polar axis", threaded-rod driven mounts), "meridian-flip" mounts (ex: GEM or cross-axis), and "no-meridian-flip" mounts (ex: Fork, yoke, horseshoe, split-ring), and beginning from 5.0 beta version, altazimuthal mounts too.
  • SoundStepper can "sync" and "go-to" manual-pointing mounts, making faint objects easier to find (manually center scope on a star, find the star in Cartes du Ciel, right-button, "sync", right-button on faint object, "go-to").
  • Using analog control, SoundStepper drive step motors with quietness, smoothness and linearity. With adjustable linearity, the typical wobbling is 1/20 of step. Like microstep controllers, it can put the motors in any position between step positions.
  • No PICs, no small SMD microsoldering, no EPROM, no switching interference. SoundStepper uses a simple (SUGGESTED) analog current controller, plugged on cheap USB-AUDIO device, to drive a stepper.
  • No MS-DOS dedicated computers. SoundStepper does realtime control sharing the computer with planetarium, photo/video capture and others applications, in Windows. It take advantage of the audio devices buffering and autonomous playing.
  • SoundStepper has built-in PEC and NPEC (periodic and non-periodic error correction systems). With NPEC, the entire threaded rod can be "trained", enabling the use of cheap thread rods, and the "thread rod/nut/arm" system (like "Astrotrac").
  • Main screen with keyboard arrows "control box" (four speeds: slew, find, center and guiding), go-to, flip, park/unpark, and focuser/rotator controls.
  • LX200 command interface compatibility, enabling the use of LX200 ASCOM driver, through any virtual serial-TCP redirector. The TCP/IP interface enable control the scope from a remote computer.
  • Configuration screen with many controls, to match SoundStepper with your motors and mount.
  • Autosave and autorecover last telescope and motor positions (crash recover)
  • Joystick interface (Beginning with 5.0 beta version)

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User Reviews

  • macielbassp
    1 of 5 2 of 5 3 of 5 4 of 5 5 of 5

    I know my own opinion can't be neutral, but I have to write it here: it really works, is cheap, and easy to assembly. Thank to it, I'm rid of parallel/serial ports and MSDOS for the equivalent of US$25 per motor. And I didn't have to weld PICs nor burn EPROMs. And the software is free, open source and public domain. No more I lose 30 minutes or more trying to find a 16th magnitude comet or asteroid in the sky! Using latest version of Soundstepper, even with my "threaded rod/arm" mount, now I can do "sync" in a nearby star, and "go-to" for an object that would be almost impossible to find otherwise.

    Posted 09/22/2010
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Additional Project Details

Languages

Brazilian Portuguese, English, Portuguese

Intended Audience

Advanced End Users, Developers, End Users/Desktop, Non-Profit Organizations, Science/Research

User Interface

Win32 (MS Windows)

Programming Language

Delphi/Kylix

Registered

2010-01-01
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