DFM Engineering, Inc. Generation III Telescope Control System TCS 68000
Telescopes have been driven by men pulling on ropes, falling weights, and by electric motors of various types. This evolution has been driven by a need for increased tracking accuracy to allow the telescope to be more efficiently used. The last great cycle of building telescopes which peaked in the early 1970’s produced telescopes with excellent tracking. The next telescope building cycle, which appears to be building up now, will introduce many new changes such as very fast primary mirrors to reduce the cost of the dome and building. The next generation of telescopes will all be computer controlled and many of the older telescopes have already been retrofitted with computer controls. The tracking accuracy will not be significantly improved, so we must ask the question, “Why should a telescope have a computer control system?” The answer is, of course, it improves the efficiency of the telescope. By efficiency, we mean the time spent collecting photons compared to the total available time.
KeywordsSerial Port Tracking Rate External Computer Incremental Encoder Position Encoder
Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.