Sunday, June 15, 2014

was on track

Turned out I was not too far off.

I was hitting the + (or =) and - keys in the typewriter area, hoping to change the "light pollution" factor in the telescope view last night. But SkyTools uses those keys for changing the time, as per the Time Step Units value. One can change the number of stars shown (indirectly) but it must be done via the + and - keys of the numeric keypad! Ooh. Missed that.

Of course, on a portable computer, that requires activating the integrated keypad...

Still, I tried it in ST3P on the netbook just now. And raised the NELM (Naked Eye Limiting Magnitude presumably) to 8.0. That's as high as it goes. But it was not much better.

Discovered that possibly I made the problem worse by switching the chart preferences from the Default Telescope/Binoculars style to a custom one. The custom one I had made so to yield "smaller" stars. Often I have found the stars to blotted. Last night I had switched it to darken the sky background.

It seems a big factor is Moonlight. If I advanced one day forward, 24 hours later, simulating a lower Moon, the star field looks better.

Asked Greg if there was anything I could do.


Discovered a bug along the way. If the light pollution keys are used, it mucks up the location profile.


Created a "fake" eyepiece called the "Orion 9x50 finder" and bound it to the 8" Dob f/6 telescope. Used the highest eyepiece focal length, 100mm, and set the FOV to 60°. That yielded a field—with this telescope—of approx. 300 minutes. Close enough.

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