Extra Devices

The Extra Devices aid is accessible from Gear tab.
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This aid is built to give control over specific devices.
The first section allows native connection to several models of flat panels - Lacerta's FBC - Flat Box Controller,  Pegasus Astro - FlatMaster,  ArteSky - Flat Box USB, GeOptik Flat Field Generator. Alnitak and clones Flat Fielding Devices. These settings are used by CCD Flats Aid and during Flats Type imaging plan execution (in both DSLR and CCD/CMOS modes) when such device is available.
Note: The flat panels support in APT was implemented before the definition of the ASCOM standard for these devices, so this section is getting obsolete. If your device has an ASCOM driver it is better to use the Flat Panel / Cover Aid.
The brightness levels per filter can be defined in Filter Wheel settings tab. If you are using Color/OSC - One Shot Camera, just enter OSC on the first line and the needed brightness. Keep in mind that you can use the Manual Filter Wheel support for manual wheels and filter drawers.
The second section allows communicating with a GPS dongle or with smartphone (using an app that forwards the location data via Bluetooth). The detected coordinates can be used by the mount, for the Darkness Clock and DSD Calculator
Extra Devices

Flats device

1. Flats device
Defines to which device brand to make connection.

Flats device Port

2. Flats device Port
Defines the COM port on which the flat panel is connected. Once selected APT will make attempt to make connection and will display the result in the Log panel.


3. Refresh
Refreshes the connection to flat panel.


4. Delay
Lacerta FBC is designed to start the flat panel flash after the exposure start in order to avoid artifacts caused by mechanical shutter or electronic shutter (rolling image reading). This delay defines how many milliseconds are needed for the camera shutter to open/close fully. APT will modify the exposure duration automatically to include that delay before and after the flash. If exposure/flash is set to 1s it will execute 1s and 800ms if the delay is set to 400ms. The total exposure = "Exposure" + 2*Delay. If you want to match perfectly the Dark Flats plan for your Flats Plan generated by the CCD Flats Aid, increase the Dark Flats exposure with 2*delay.
For Pegasus Astro - FlatMaster and Geoptik - Flat Field Generator is used the same logic for panel control as for Lacerta FBC.
ArteSky - Flat Box USB needs some time to stabilize the needed brightness. You can use this setting to give time the brightness to reach the desired level before taking exposure. 
For Alnitak and clones is used the same  for panel control logic as for ArteSky - Flat Box USB.

GPS Port

5. GPS Port
Define the COM port of the GPS dongle. If smartphone is used (with dedicated app that exports the current location via Bluetooth), it will be also visible as COM port. Once selected APT will make attempt to make connection and will display the result in the Log panel.

  It is also possible to read the location coordinates from the PrimaLuceLab EAGLE computer GPS.


6. Refresh
Refreshes the connection to the GPS dongle or smartphone.


7. Coordinates
Shows the detected coordinates. Keep in mind that it can take several minutes the GPS dongle to detect the satellites.


8. Status
Shows the connection status.

Set as current

9. Set as current
Once coordinates are available you can set them as current location in Settings Location tab and use them for the mount, for the Darkness Clock and DSD Calculator.


10. More
Opens small settings dialog box where you can manage the COM port speed or to enable/disable GPS data logging. Use logging only in case of problem because the log files could become quite big.