Weather Station project

-While the scope autoguider calibrates, I’d like to talk a little bit about my newest project.

With a lot of help from Andy and the internet, I’m making an auto-logging weather station that will update a graph of the previous days temperature and barometric pressure to my website:

This is a project that I’ve wanted to do for a long time but have never really got around to it until now. Most of the hard stuff I got figured out over this past week.In fact, tonight is the first trial run (in-doors) of course) where the unit is logging the data *in the correct format* to a text file where a graphing program will utilize it later – which I’ve already messed with and have gotten it to work. I’m eventually going to add a light meter and webcam… One step at a time. I’d also like to mention that this project is a predecessor to Andy and I’s upcoming high-altitude balloon project. That project will utilize the same technology as the weather station so we’re using the weather station as a sort-of proof of concept. I’ll keep ya posted!

Tonight however, I’m taking advatange of an exceptionally clear moonless September night. I don;t have anything in particular I want to image but I would like to practice and get better with post processing images… so I chose to image M31, the Andromeda galaxy with the Canon T3 nad Backyard EOS software. I’m planning on taking some darks, some lights, and try stacking and processing the images tomorrow.

I’m taking multiple (100+) images of M31 including darks, lights, bias. It’s taking some time. I’m listening to ‘Lonesome Dove Radio’ on Pandora, which is basically very old, simple folk music. It’s the prefect compliment to waiting for the images to complete since each of these old songs are small, self-contained dramas. I feel like I’ve watched an entire episode of some Netflix original series that follows the tragedy of various simple folk high in the hills. I’m loving every second of it. Heartache out on the plains of Western America – loss in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest (someone’s loved one will never return from chasing the dream of striking it rich in the gold rush??) – Unbearable sorrow in the great northwest hills & forests… so great… who needs TV?!

I can’t be happier with my alignment and autoguiding though! I’m taking 2+ minute exposures with NO problem.

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