James Paulson's roll off roof observatory at the Sunridge Observatory site, taken in the summer of 1986, housing a 10 inch f/5 Cave Astrola Newtonian reflector telescope

Friday, August 27, 2010

A Cool New Tool for Astrophotography

The AstroTrac TT320X-AG has got to be one of the coolest new tools for the astrophotographer, and is something I would really love to add to my collection. The basis of this unit is that it is easy to polar align and has exceptional tracking abilities that allow you to track the stars, moon and sun with it's variable rates. The latest release even allows for the addition of an autoguider but judging from the images that I have seen taken with it, it's really not required. It can hold an incredible load (large camera lenses) without flexure and still maintain excellent tracking. The images above demonstrate how the Astrotrac fixes to a tripod and how the camera mounts on it. The key is good polar alignment and for this it is essential to purchase the optional polar alignment scope

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