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Alignment Procedure

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Alignmaster

Alignmaster is a computer software program developed by Matthias Garzarolli for a quick and precise alignment of "Goto" astronomy telescope mounts to the Earth's polar axis. This computer alignment method is much easier and faster than the drift alignment method. A camera is not required; an ocular (eyepiece with illuminated cross-hairs) is sufficient to give a precise alignment. The spotting telescope can also be used for the alignment procedure but is not recommended due to its low magnifications.

Alignment Procedure Summary

A video tutorial of the simple alignment procedure is narrated below. A step-by-step description of the alignment procedure is also provided.

The computer software program monitors the selection and slewing procedure to calculated locations for two visible stars. At each star location the user refines mount pointing with manual slewing to accurately center the visible image of each star in the ocular cross-hairs. The software program uses the measured angular difference in Azimuth(AZ) and Altitude(ALT) between the two stars to calculate AZ and ALT misalignment errors. The software program then slews the mount to its calculated location for the second star where the user adjusts alignment screws in AZ and ALT on the "Goto" mount to center the star in the ocular cross-hairs. This completes the mount alignment procedure; the mount should now be fully aligned to the Earth polar axis. The alignment procedure may be repeated to verify alignment accuracy.

Video-tutorial by "Dion L Heap"

Free Version Trial Offer

The software is shareware. Feel free to download and evaluate the software. The free version is fully functional, but the operation is limited to 30 days. For the free version a registration key is required. Please register the software after downloading.

Requirements

  • "Goto" Mount controlled via ASCOM telescope interface
  • Geographical location and computer clock set precisely for good alignment
  • Optional: GPS device with exact position and time readout
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