ASTREL AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera Kit

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AST-8300X-KIT
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Accessories Added

 

  • A Monochrome WiFi Telescope Camera with a Built-In 7 Position Filter-Wheel 
  • This Kit includes 7 Filters 
  • 64Gb of On-board Storage
  • Autonomous Autoguiding
  • A wireless Camera Mode to run without a PC on hand!

 

DESCRIPTION

ASTREL AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera Kit

AST-8300X-KIT

Astrel AST8300-X-M-FW-7F (+ 7 Optolong filters kit: LRGB Ha OIII SII)

The AST8300X is based on the 8.3-megapixels monochrome KAF-8300 CCD Sensor and is equipped with integrated 7 positions Filter-Wheel.

The AST8300X product features: 

  • New concept low-vacuum CCD sensor chamber that guarantees no-frost with -35°C DeltaT at only 2.4A of power consumption

  • Powerful 1GHz microprocessor for stand alone wire-free operation (no PC is needed)
  • PC like use with Operating System, Graphic Desktop, Web access, applications that can be created, installed and removed
  • Integrated WiFi connection to PC / Tablet / Smartphone
  • 8 GB (expandible up to 64 GB) internal storage plus external USB pendrive or hard-disk
  • Open-Source Camera Processor Code available to the user to experiment ideas and specific SW application
  • 2 HS USB ports, controlled +12V DC output power (flatbox controller)
  • 7 Optolong filters, (L, R, G, B, Ha, OIII, and SII.)

  ASTREL AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera Kit-vacuumpump

Sensor Specifications:

  • CCD .......... On-Semi(Kodak) KAF-8300 (mono)
  • Pixel Array ... 3326 x 2504 pixels
  • CCD Size ...... 18 x 13.5 mm
  • Total Pixels .. ​8.3 Million
  • Full Well ..... ~25500 e-
  • Dark Current .. 0.015e-/pixel/sec at -20°C
  • Antiblooming .. 1000X

 

 Camera Characteristics:

  • Shutter ....... Mechanical
  • Filter wheel... Integrated,7 1.25" unmounted filters
  • Camera Size ... 124x124mm, 45mm body 90mm heatsink
  • Mounting ...... M42 T-thread
  • Weight ........ 850g (w/ integrated filter-wheel)
  • Backfocus ..... 16 mm (including integrated filter-wheel)
  • Interfaces .... USB 2.0 Host HS x2, 12V out flatbox controller

 

 Camera Performances:

  • Sampling Mode . Digital multi-sample CDS
  • A/D Converter . 16 bit
  • Gain .......... 0.95 e-/ADU (first samples)
  • Total Noise ... 7.5e- rms typ (first samples)
  • Binning Modes . up to 10x10
  • Readout Speed . 270 Kpxls/sec (about 30 sec)
  • Max Cooling ... -35 °C ±0.1°C regulated
  • Power ......... 12VDC @ 2.4 A max (operational at 100% Peltier)

 

 ASTREL AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera Kit-minipadASTREL AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera Kit-wifi-smartphone

 Smart Camera Approach: ​

The Astrel Instruments cameras are powered by a 1000MHz Processor with 1Gb of memory and up to 64Gb of onboard storage.  Thanks to its "intelligence", the camera can do onboard all the operations that other cameras can only do by means of an external PC, because the camera is a PC itself. ​

Similar to a powerful astrophotography-oriented DSRL, the camera itself offers an integrated complete suite of easy to use graphical applications including: ​

  • Photo sequences programming with filters management
  • Temperature setting and monitor
  • Liveview with integrated focus mode
  • Autoguiding with dithering
  • Planetariums with mount control, including plate solving
  • Images review ​

The camera can autonomously autoguide with many commercial USB autoguider cameras and use planetarium applications to control the mount operations (alignment, goto, ...) on most commercial mounts. Many other commercial devices like motorized focusers, external filter wheels, ... can also be directly connected and managed autonomously by the camera.

 

The Wireless mode allows using the camera without a PC:​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​

The Wireless mode let the user communicate with the camera through a WiFi connection established between his Tablet / Smartphone (or of course a PC) and the camera. The connection uses remote desktop technology to send the camera display to the connected devices. No wires are needed between the camera and the devices: no risk of stumbling on a wire ruining the work of hours or even damaging your equipment.

As the PC is not needed and the camera only needs a maximum of 2.4A at 12V, in these modes there's no need to carry big battery packs and power inverters: one small battery or even your car's one is enough for a whole night.

All the connected devices use the same integrated software suite: the camera's applications are accessible via remote desktop from any network connected device, including PC, Smartphones and Tablets. ​

Moreover, thanks to the Open Source license of all the software and the Linux OS, other applications can be easily added by the users, giving the camera more and more capabilities: our aim is to create a community of users and software developers which will add leading edge contents, ranging from innovative readout modes to web enabled applications. ​ ​

 

On camera smart software suite:​

This suite of applications has been developed to make the Astrel Instruments cameras really easy and intuitive to use. No complicated software: use this apps connecting with your smartphone, tablet, PC and a few minutes and clicks are enough to start taking pictures.

Live view: the camera displays a bin 10 image, refreshing up to 3 fps. With a few seconds exposure even very faint objects becomes visible, allowing precise framing

Focus: enter the focus mode selecting a star in the live view, which is enlarged up to 8x. The app calculates and displays FWHM and profile with an up to 3 fps refresh rate

Temperature Control: select a set-point and the minimum number of seconds/°C and start the PID algorithm that will keep the temperature constant within 0.1°C

Take Photos: start your photo sequence defining, for each filter, the number of frames, exposure time and binning of the sub-frames. It also sends dithering commands to the guider

Monitor: follow the current sub-frame number in the sequence and some info about the camera status. It can also preview the last frame or kill the sequence

Guider: connect your autoguider to the camera and use this app, derived from Lin_guider, for guiding your telescope. It features drift graph, statistics and dithering

 

On camera advanced software:

Thanks to the powerful integrated microprocessor and large memory, any Astrel Instruments camera is by any means a PC, running the Ubuntu OS with hundreds of available applications, including many astrophotography related ones.

The cameras come with several pre-installed astronomy applications including:

  • KStars and Cartes du Ciel, two well known planetarium apps that can control most mounts for alignment and GOTO operation
  • Ekos, an image planning and observatory control software using offline Astrometry.net for plate solving and INDI standard for equipment control
  • DS9, a powerful app for image review and analysis

 ASTREL AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera Kit-filterwheel

Integrated Filter Wheel:

The AST8300X includes an integrated 7 positions filter wheel using 1.25" unmounted filters. ​

Precision filter positioning: the AST8300X feature a set of spring loaded balls with corresponding holes for a very precise and repeatable filters positioning: when the correct alignment is reached, the ball enters the hole, elastically recovering any small positioning error.

 

Cooling and vacuum chamber:

ASTREL AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera Kit-pumpThe AST8300X camera features a power consumption of only 2.4A @ 12V in fully operative state with 100% peltier on. In spite of this very low power consumption, an efficient 2 stages peltier cooling system can lower the regulated CCD temperature by up to 35°C below ambient. ​

The sensor and the cooling chain are contained in a vacuum proof chamber: using the included vacuum pump connected to the valve on the rear of the camera body, in less than a minute the air can be pumped-out. This has 2 fundamental effects: it eliminates the possibility of frost forming inside the chamber and minimizes the convention up and down heat transfer inside the chamber, optimizing the heat removal via the cold finger and avoiding cooling of the optical window that could lead to fogging. ​

 

Every camera is tested to maintain a proper vacuum level for at least 3 days (most cameras can hold the vacuum for several weeks). For customers running remote observatories, it is possible to fill the chamber with inert gas like Argon or Kripton, which will stay in the camera for months. The vacuum level can be controlled through the manometer incorporated in the vacuum pump. No desiccant is needed.

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SPECIFICATIONS

Back focus16mm
Bayer MatrixMonochrome
Camera ConnectionM42 x 0.75 T_thread
CooledCooled
Delta T35°C Below Ambient
Dynamic Range11.8 Stops
Full Rez Frame Ratefps
Full Well25.5ke
ManufacturerAstrel Instruments
Max Frame Ratefps
Mega Pixels8.3 mp
Peak QE %
Pixel Array3326 x 2504
Pixel Size8.3 microns
Power Consumption12V 2.4A max
Read Noise7.5e
Sensor Diagonal34.6mm
Sensor TypeCCD
SensorKAF_8300
Weight0.992 lbs

INCLUDED ITEMS

Included:

  • Astrel AST8300 Cooled Monochrome CCD Telescope Camera body
  • WiFi antenna
  • Vacuum pump with incorporated pressure gauge, tube, and joint
  • Battery power cable: power cable extension with car lighter plug
  • 7 Optolong filters, (L, R, G, B, Ha, OIII, and SII.)

 

 

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