‘All Sky’ Camera Software for Windows
The AllSkEye application is a free, dedicated Windows ‘All-Sky’ imaging app for use with astronomical all-sky cameras. The app will run on any version of Windows from Vista onwards and currently supports Starlight Xpress and ZWO ASI cameras as well as any camera supported by an ASCOM driver (for full details on system requirements and supported cameras please have a look here: Requirements). The application has been running pretty stable for a good while now but is still considered a work in progress with updates coming out quite frequently so please be patient if you spot the odd problem or bug. Support is available through the support forum where I will attempt to help as quickly as I can.
The main features of the application are:
- Run autonomously 24/7 – no user interaction required
- Acquire images all the time, during fixed pre-set times or pre-set times relating to sunset and rise
- Run camera at fixed exposure times or auto exposure times based on image brightness
- Save or FTP most recent picture in jpg format to allow monitoring of current sky conditions via a webcam style website
- Image preview function to allow easy setting up of the system
- Process acquired images (stretch , clip, mirror) and save as .png or .jpg files
- Add static and dynamic overlays (text, compass rose, logos, star and solar system object names)
- Save original image data as FITS files
- Create avi or mp4 video files from saved images
- Run a basic line detection algorithm to identify possible meteor trails
- Setup folder management to automatically delete older images to ensure the hard disk is not filling up
- Setup Email Notifications to get alerts if the system encounters any issues
A while ago I was working on a university project related to detecting meteor trails in ‘all sky’ images. This resulted in a custom piece of Windows software which what was able to automatically acquire and process images 24/7. Once the project was done I thought that this functionality would be useful to others with similar setups to monitor sky conditions and create images and videos of the night sky. I spent some time on making the software more user friendly and adding more functionality and support for different camera models.