CCD Flats Aid

The CCD Flats Aid is accessible from Tools tab.
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CCD Flats Aid is made to help determining the right exposure time when making flat frames with CCD/CMOS camera. As the name shows currently it is not working with DSLRs - in most cases you can use the AV dial mode to make good flat frames with DSLR.
This aid provides some advanced features like evaluating several filters at once and automatically creating an imaging plan with separate line per filter with the found exposure duration. Built-in is logic that minimize the count of the used exposures during the search of the optimal duration.
CCD Flats Aid
Tips&Tricks If you usually taking the flats in similar conditions you can evaluate the created plans and make the range Min/Max exposure smaller. This will speedup the search process and will lead to fewer count of test exposures. For Min Exp select few seconds smaller than the smallest value you have got for all filters. For Max Exp enter few seconds more than the longest exposure you got for all filters.

Ringy Thingy

1. Ringy Thingy
Ringy Thingy is an innovative way to edit numeric values using only mouse or touch pad. See details and animation how to use it in the Application Interface notes.

Target ADU

2. Target ADU
Defines the desired ADU value that you want to reach in order to consider that exposure duration is fine. Usually it is value around 20,000 for 16bits cameras. For 14 bits vlaue 5000-6000 should be fine. Keep in mind that Target ADU depends on the gain. You may need to lower the value if the gain is too big.

ADU Range

3. ADU Range
Defines the tolerance range of the ADU value that is acceptable.

Starting Exp

4. Starting Exp
Defines the starting exposure duration in seconds.

Minimal Exp

5. Minimal Exp
Defines the shortest exposure that you want to try.

Maximal Exp

6. Maximal Exp
Defines the longest exposure that you want to try.


7. Gain
Defines the gain value to use for determining the flats exposure. If there is a value here it is used as top priority. If it is empty, gain per filter is second, the gain set in Camera Tab last.


8. Binning
Defines the binning that have to be used.

Region Of Interest

9. Region Of Interest
Defines if you want to Region On Interest. This option will use the center of the CCD/CMOS sensor and speed-ups the image downloading. Could be valuable options if you are making sky-flats and imaging time is limited.

Use filters

10. Use filters
Defines if you want to determine the exposure time for multiple filters and which filter wheel positions to use.

Create plan

11. Create plan
Defines if you want automatically to create an Flats type imaging plan with the found exposure time(s). It is very handy option if you use filters. Some flat panels require a longer pause between the exposures, so if there is need increase the "Exp Pause" field.


12. Run
Starts the determining of the exposure time(s).


13. Abort
Stops the running process.