Feature Request - Enhancements to time scheduling


Hi Mainsequence Software Team

A Couple of feature requests with regards to scheduling

Number 1
Some of us are restricted to what we can image at certain times, for example I only have a 3 hour window to image anything in the southern region of sky, however it gets to be about 4 minutes earlier every evening for when the object can be imaged, it is possible to add something into the Start/End times to take this into account that you want to image it earlier each session based on how early it rises etc?

Number 2
Filter Selection Scheduling, whenever it is a moonlit night, Narrowband is the way to go, however after the moon has set then you can resume normal LRGB imaging, it would be nice to be able to have in the sequence specific times for specific filters, that way I can leave my gear imaging knowing it will take care of using non-narrowband filters after moonset. I know this could probably be done using a seperate sequence, but for simplicity I like to keep a sequence for each target


SGP GIST Program

I agree with 1. We actually have this request elsewhere in the forum and it is definitely something we plan on doing.

As for 2 I think this may be a little above and beyond what we want to do with SGP. That’s getting more into ACP territory, more of the “fire and forget” mentality where you actually don’t care what is imaged as long as it’s from your list. But we’ll consider it.



Thanks Jared


+1 to both. I bet there is a good market in the SGPuser base for ‘ACP’ like functionality that we’d all gladly pay more for.


+1 agreed on both. i guess as a first step i’d like to add that attempting the next target when the current target fails recovery would be nice. for those of us with hard horizon limits, usually plans fail due to the target descending into the trees or a wall rather than clouds - the next target in the sequence may well be eligible though (i always arrange them in RA order)


@pfile Agreed, however SGPro would need to move the telescope to a point where it can perform a plate solve, if the object being imaged has gone behind trees then the chances are you are not going to get a platesolve image, so there should be some recovery mechanism to move the scope a few minutes back.

A problem I see with this is that how is SGPro going to know if it has hit a limit (Due to an obstacle in the frame) or if it is a cloud that has obscured the view, SGPro does not know if it is a transient or permanent condition. The guider will also fail which will trigger SGPro to stop imaging and attempt a recovery on the sequence anyway


I don’t think this is strictly true… if both “slew to” and “center on” are ticked in the next target then SGP does not solve/sync before slewing to the next target. it solve/syncs after getting there. so it should work as-is.

all I’m saying is that if recovery fails, then the sequence should not immediately end; it should check to see if there is another target ticked. currently the assumption is that if recovery fails then the sky is spoiled but in fact the target could simply be behind an obstruction.

a nice to have feature would be horizon limits so SGP could tell if the next ticked target is actually above the horizon before trying to go there.


@pfile you’ve just taught me about the “Slew to” option, many thanks :slight_smile:


Slew to is awesome :).

I agree if we could get ‘horizon’ limits that would solve a lot of our issues especially if SGP could attempt a new target if the horizon limit was breached.


I think what this is turning into is much more advanced scheduling. I’m not sure if/when we will approach something like this. I’m not going to lie, we’ve been talking about it for a while but it’s a pretty large undertaking. Essentially you would have targets and you couldn’t guarantee when they would be imaged. We’d essentially attempt to complete all targets at their best possible time.

So ya, I’m not saying “no” but it’s no small effort!



+1 for
Horizon-elevation limits

Display of moon rise and set, twilight in a panel would be nice.




We get it :). Just like observatory support was a huge change, it’s just something to look for in the future!



i don’t know if this feature has been considered for the upcoming poll, but i wanted to plug the “continue to next target on recovery failure” idea as a first start on enhanced scheduling. i should have posted in the other thread but i found it closed when i came to the forum today…


I would just like see Sun / moon rise and set times in the program when I enter into sequence.
Cleardarksky.com gets their rise and set data from the USNO. Perhaps this can be displayed in a panel.



I think that this should also be graphically presented sorta like in this thread (but more sophisticated):


That would help a lot to visualize the sequence.

I would also be willing to pay extra for this as a plugin of sorts.


USNO has lots of online ways to generate the data we need. It is used by Cleardarksky.com


I input my location


Sun and Moon Data for One Day
U.S. Naval Observatory
Astronomical Applications Department

Sierra Vista, Cochise County, AZ (Longitude W110° 17’, Latitude N31° 33’)
Sunday, August 28, 2016 Mountain Standard Time
Begin civil twilight 5:30 a.m.
Sunrise 5:55 a.m.
Sun transit 12:22 p.m.
Sunset 6:49 p.m.
End civil twilight 7:14 p.m.
Moonrise 2:20 a.m.
Moon transit 9:21 a.m.
Moonset 4:19 p.m.

Closest Primary Moon Phase: New Moon on September 1, 2016 at 2:03 a.m. (local standard time)

Phase of the Moon on August 28, 2016: Waning Crescent with 14% of the Moon’s visible disk illuminated.

The HTML version looks nicer. You can input lat and long. There might a simple be a way to import this into SGP.