Can I interface Stellariun to sensors like a digital compass and gyroscope to get a similar pointing function as say the Celestron Sky Scout? I was thinking of trying to implement this on a Raspberry Pi with an Astro Hat.

Asked by Timothy Neill on 2017-01-21

The Sky Scout I have used in the past, with binoculars and a trapezium mount, has stopped working because the firmware no longer works with the built in GPS, because it cannot handled dates with years greater than 2015. I am looking for a replacement. I have previously run Stellarium on a Raspberry Pi and now have a Pi with the Sense Hat which has sensors including a digital compass, gyroscope and accelerometer. I see that there are interfaces to control telescope mounts to drive them to the location set on Stellarium. I am looking for a way to reverse this and send Stellarium compass and gyroscope data from the the Sense Hat to drive the display to the same coordinates. Has anyone looked into this or something similar?

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gzotti (georg-zotti) said :

Section 14.4 in the user guide which points to a few Raspberry and Arduino projects which we could find. the iTelescope looks promising, just replace the decoders by converting your sensor data. Sorry, we cannot help with this, but these projects have their own websites. If you manage to "speak" the protocol used by the telescope plugin, you should be able to see a "telescope pointer" on the screen.
Good Luck, and please report back when it works!

Note that Stellarium runs pretty well on a Pi 2 or 3, but the current "experimental" OpenGL driver (at least in NOOBS from December) has an ugly bug with a complete white-out when looking into some directions.

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Timothy Neill (timneill01) said :

Thanks for the guidance.

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gzotti (georg-zotti) said :

In case you want to transmit device orientation (azimuth, altitude) to the view in Stellarium and not just plot a telescope mark: For another project I have just extended the RemoteControl API to allow setting azimuth/altitude via HTTP. You may want to use this, should be available in the next beta. If you attach a screen on a Pi (or rather a Pi on a screen) and hold the screen like a tablet, this could be used. Or even just have a Pi on a pointing stick.

Current state is described here, watch for possible more extensions.

New function:
POST with arguments
az: azimuth angle (radians)
alt: altitude angle (radians)

Report back when (and how well) it works! I consider buying a sense hat myself :-)

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