Re: Using QuickCam for Astronomical Work

K. Starr (
Mon, 05 May 1997 12:21:01 -0400

At 02:31 PM 5/5/97 +1000, The mad Scientist! wrote:
>On Tue, 29 Apr 1997, Rowland Carver wrote:
>> Has anyone used a QuickCAm with CU-SEE-ME program for astronomical work?=

>I don't know a great deal about astronomy, but I don't think the QuickCam
>is very light-sensitive. =20

Actually, I have found the opposite to be the case. One must carefully
balance lighting in order to prevent burn-out (not of the Quickcam, but of
portions of the picture). I have not tried it for sky-shots at night, yet,
though, as I live in a city.

>You would probably have better luck/results with
>a good video camera (I assume astronomers know a fair bit about this
>topic, and which are best), which you can connect to a video capture card
>in the computer.

I have had very good results with an ordinary consumer camcorder equipped
with a screw-on teleconverter and fed to a Video Blaster for shots of the
moon; resonable detail resolution at the terminator was achieved.

There are CCD devices made especially for attachment to a telescope.
Information on these can be obtained by picking up a copy of "Sky and
Telescope" magazine.

>Why exactly do you want to involve CU-SeeMe?

I don't know about Mr. Carver, but some possibilities that come to mind are
collaboration among various far-flung members of a astronomy club, broadcast
to a classroom environment, or, perhaps, one member of a group lives far
from the city (and the $%#@ ambient light) and can thus broadcast his/her
"observations" to other members who are not so fortunate. =20

Warm regards,

Kent Starr
aka Wizzard=A9