This section remains as it was when I wrote it in 2003. The technology has changed a bit over the years but the goals of remote imaging are the same. This section contains a somewhat detailed account of the construction of my first observatory, the MAS (Maine Astronomical Society) Observatory. This observatory was 14 x 17 feet with a roll-off roof design. The observatory itself is fully robotic and can be run, from opening the roof, to imaging and processing, via remote desktop. It utilizes a number of SmartHome devices, including a SmartHome USB interface. Much of the credit for this successful design goes to John Smith, who was instrumental in his capacity as my consultant. Both he, and Ron Wodowski (through his book) were instrumental in guiding me to a solid mount and quality telescope. I hope these pages are helpful to others who are attempting a project such as this.
This observatory was closed down when I moved back to California in October of 2006
OVERVIEW: This area summarizes the construction of my second observatory (the first is shown below, and is no longer in use). This observatory has the ability to operate either remotely or locally, and has two main telescopes (each with a piggyback 4" refractor). The main telescope is an RC Optical 16" Ritchey-Chetien Reflector (primarily for photographic use) and the secondary telescope is a 12" GPS LX-200 (primarily for video/visual use at star parties). Although owned and built at my personal time and expense, the observatory is available on a limited basis interested groups and to the Maine Astronomical Society, primarily during star parties. The site is being updated frequently so that those who are interested in building an observatory can follow along with the trial and tribulations of this project. Again, I have been very fortunate to have John Smith ( www.hiddenloft.com ) as my consultant on this project.
The Lost Valley Observatory
Located at Sierra Remote Observatories
Keith B Quattrocchi