9 August 2016 Design and development of control unit and software for the ADFOSC instrument of the 3.6 m Devasthal optical telescope
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Abstract
In this paper, we describe the details of control unit and GUI software for positioning two filter wheels, a slit wheel and a grism wheel in the ADFOSC instrument. This is a first generation instrument being built for the 3.6 m Devasthal optical telescope. The control hardware consists of five electronic boards based on low cost 8-bit PIC microcontrollers and are distributed over I2C bus. The four wheels are controlled by four identical boards which are configured in I2C slave mode while the fifth board acts as an I2C master for sending commands to and receiving status from the slave boards. The master also communicates with the interfacing PC over TCP/IP protocol using simple ASCII commands. For moving the wheels stepper motors along with suitable amplifiers have been employed. Homing after powering ON is achieved using hall effect sensors. By implementing distributed control units having identical design modularity is achieved enabling easier maintenance and upgradation. A GUI based software for commanding the instrument is developed in Microsoft Visual C++. For operating the system during observations the user selects normal mode while the engineering mode is available for offering additional flexibility and low level control during maintenance and testing. A detailed time-stamped log of commands, status and errors are continuously generated. Both the control unit and the software have been successfully tested and integrated with the ADFOSC instrument.
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T. S. Kumar, T. S. Kumar, } "Design and development of control unit and software for the ADFOSC instrument of the 3.6 m Devasthal optical telescope", Proc. SPIE 9908, Ground-based and Airborne Instrumentation for Astronomy VI, 99084Y (9 August 2016); doi: 10.1117/12.2233082; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2233082
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