Python module for LX200 telescope command set

Steve Horsley steve.horsley at gmail.com
Mon Jan 30 17:24:50 CET 2006


Terry Hancock wrote:
> On Sun, 29 Jan 2006 15:25:43 -0800
> RayS <rays at blue-cove.com> wrote:
> (about LX200 module)
> 
> Sounds interesting, but I don't actually know what an LX200
> is. I considered buying one of the Meade computer controlled
> telescopes (there is a very inexpensive one that has been
> marketed through Walmart. Ordinarily, I would steer clear of
> a "department store telescope", but I was intrigued that
> they were selling a name brand telescope).
> 

Very wise. But I think even Meade's cheapest offering would be 
worth having. They don't make really crap scopes.


> But the box is very uninformative -- it seems as if there's
> some kind of fixed catalog of objects that the scope will
> find, with no way to just enter coordinates. It seemed like
> maybe it would be *too* automated.  But if in fact it's
> possible to interface to one of these with a little Python,
> that would make things a lot different. Do they have some
> kind of serial or USB port on them?
> 
> Of course, you may be talking about an entirely different
> telescope!
> 

I think they all support goto by RA and declination in addition 
to the more common goto Mars or goto M51. The planets are 
actually star #901-#909 but skipping #903.

You have to be careful to get the scope alignment right, though. 
This normally involves centering two stars after the scope is 
turned on. My old LX200 has a nasty habit of pointing straight at 
the house and saying "centre Altair", you can re-align on stars 
that you _can_ see any time you like.



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