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Extra Devices

The Extra Devices aid is accessible from Tools tab.
 
This aid is built to give control over specific devices. In the first section are the parameters for controlling devices for taking flats - Lacerta's FBC - Flat Box Controller,  Pegasus Astro - FlatMaster,  ArteSky - Flat Box USB. These settings are used by CCD Flats Aid and during Flats Type imaging plan execution (in both DSLR and CCD/CMOS modes) when such device is available.
 
The second section allows to talk with a GPS dongle or with smartphone (using an app that forwards the location data via Bluetooth). The detected coordinates can be used by the mount, for the Darkness Clock and DSD Calculator
 
Extra Devices
 
1

Flats device

1. Flats device
 
Defines to which device brand to make connection.
 
2

Flats device Port

2. Flats device Port
 
Defines the COM port on which the flat panel is connected. Once selected APT will make attempt to make connection and will display the result in the Log panel.
 
3

Refresh

3. Refresh
 
Refreshes the connection to flat panel.
 
4

Delay

4. Delay
 
Lacerta FBC is designed to start the flat panel flash after the exposure start in order to avoid artifacts from the shutter. This delay defines how many milliseconds are needed the camera shutter to open/close fully. APT will modify the exposure duration automatically to include that delay before and after the flash. If exposure/flash is set to 1s it will execute 1s and 800ms if the delay is set to 400ms.
 
For Pegasus Astro - FlatMaster is used the same logic as for Lacerta FBC
 
ArteSky - Flat Box USB needs some time to stabilize the needed brightness. You can use this setting to give time the brightness to reach the desired level before taking exposure. 
 
 
5

Brightness

5. Brightness
 
Define the flat panel brightness per filter. If there is no filter wheel connected the first value will be used.
 
6

GPS Port

6. GPS Port
 
Define the COM port of the GPS dongle. If smartphone is used (with dedicated app that exports the current location via Bluetooth), it will be also visible as COM port. Once selected APT will make attempt to make connection and will display the result in the Log panel. 
 
7

Refresh

7. Refresh
 
Refreshes the connection to the GPS dongle or smartphone.
 
8

Coordinates

8. Coordinates
 
Shows the detected coordinates. Keep in mind that it can take several minutes the GPS dongle to detect the satellites.
 
9

Status

9. Status
 
Shows the connection status.
 
10

Set as current

10. Set as current
 
Once coordinates are available you can set them as current location in Settings Location tab and use them for the mount, for the Darkness Clock and DSD Calculator.
 
11

More

11. More
 
Opens small settings dialog box where you can manage the COM port speed or to enable/disable GPS data logging. Use logging only in case of problem because the log files could become quite big.