NOTE: The camera is in a temprorary location with limited sky view during system calibration.
The camera is a Sony HiCam HB-710E. The CCD (Charge Coupled Device)is a 1.27 cm (0.5 inch) interlined chip with 410K pixels. Effective Pixels 768 (Horizontal) X 494 (Vertical). It has a super-low illumination environment of 0.0005 Lux(F1.2 /20 IRE at AGC Max). It is powered by +12VDC and consumes 150 milliAmps at maximum load.
The lens is Rainbow L163VDC4P fisheye lens with a 180 degree feild.
The Video Sentinel - frame grabber comes in a separate box. It contains a micro-controller, a RCM3200, from Rabbit Semiconductor. There are three connections on the box, 1) +3.3V DC input, 2) a BNC male connector for the 1Vp-p video input from the Sony camera via 75 ohm coax, and 3) an Ethernet jack. The frame grabber communicates with a PC via the ethernet cable either directly with a crossover cable or through a LAN hub via a conventional ethernet cable.
The software comes on a CD-ROM. There are several dependancies that must be loaded and compiled prior to compiling the main program. The project managers have done an excellent job and the compiling went without a snag and ran the first attempt on my LINUX and UNIX machines. The software also runs on Windows XP and Apple Mac OS-X both PPC and Intel versions. The program itself has multiple features such as masking of images, testing memories, snapshot capture, timers, and so on.
To use the software you press a connect button which establishes communication between the PC and the frame grabber. The button turns green when the link is established. In it's working mode, watching for fireballs, you simply press the WATCH button. It turns green to show it is working. If any change in luminosity and or movement is noted the WATCH button turns magenta, a target box highlights the target and follows it then the software records two data files to hard drive as the event ends. All events are time stamped. The files can be reviewed and turned into video movies, GIF, JPG, or TIFF format, or deleted if false.
Here are some photographs of the video camera and housing.Here is the current map and list of operational cameras in the North American Fireball Camera Network.
Kelowna International Airport (YLW) weather.
RADAR from Silver Star Mountain
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