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Homemade UFO Detection and Recording Gizmos

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posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:19 PM
just theory
Thanks for the link. It was a good idea. I'm amazed at how close our ideas are. It's weird, my thread didn't get any discussion at first either, thought it was doomed. Yeah, daytime is neat too. It is just scarier in my backyard at night.

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:21 PM
Jay-in-AR & just theory
I can't auto track with this system yet because the main scope is just a Dob mount. I hope I have time some day to build an Aluminum open frame mount to give it tracking capability and improve the optics alignment.

I've had trouble finding off the shelf software for motorized tracking of an object on an arbitrary trajectory so if any of you happen to be looking around for that type of thing...

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:25 PM
reply to post by dainoyfb

Are you talking about a HAM radio?

I would definately suggest that if I were building something like you have.
Although I think the DoD jams frequencies.

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:29 PM
reply to post by dainoyfb

I think the problem with visual tracking would be a matter of scale.
Well, that and other things.

Being a land-surveyor by trade, I know that we have such software, we use similar software when operating GPS instruments. However, the software to track visually alone would be neigh on impossible unless you were able to auto-adjust and guage for distance to keep the object in the same base of reference at all times...

I would look at using the FLIR to track by heat.

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:33 PM
Well presence of jamming is good evidence too.

Yeah ham or any radio, even an old AM radio tuned off station looking for interference. By all band I mean a receiver that is just sitting there listening to a large part of the spectrum at once. It is easy to do, basically a poorly designed radio with no rejection or filters. Some of the very first radios were not tunable at all, they just listened to everything at once.

edit for typo

[edit on 2-3-2009 by dainoyfb]

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:36 PM
I think I've seen people that film satellites for a hobby using software for tracking through a telescope but I don't know if it is off the shelf or something they wrote.

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:44 PM
reply to post by dainoyfb

I would like to see that.

Although, with satellites, you wouldn't have to worry about having to change your zoom. They move in a pretty standard trajectory.

I think you would run into serious problems if you caught something extraordinary, though.

[edit on 2-3-2009 by Jay-in-AR]

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 10:53 PM
I'm thinking if I track with a wide field camera or the FLIR (which also has a NTSC video output) then the whole instrument package would be following and I'd be free to zoom with the telescope because it is not doing the tracking. The FLIR or tracking camera would essentially be viewing a constant sized dot (at distances anyway).

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 11:00 PM
If I run into something extraordinary I'll probably be just standing there gawking with drool on my face anyway. And if something gets that close I'll be lucky if electronics are still running at all.

I see what you are saying though, if something is zigging around near by it would take a pretty capable (read expensive) system to keep on it.

posted on Mar, 2 2009 @ 11:08 PM
reply to post by dainoyfb

Yeah, that would have been my guess also.

Keep tabs on it with the FLIR with the freedom to move in and out otherwise.
Nice system, man.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 01:07 AM
Way to inspire the masses! Stard & flgd. I am going to try at least the 2 cam thing.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 04:05 AM
Yeah, the dual camera system has some huge advantages over conventional systems. For one you can do distance measurement and therefore size and speed measurement. It also eliminates mistaking near field objects (such as insects, fluff, birds, etc) from being mistaken for large objects (because they would only be visible in one camera). That would be very handy when researching rods. Image integration is possible on objects moving across the image too so resolution is improved.

There is tons of recording software available that triggers on an image change. It is typically made for security cameras and so usually has 4 or more video and audio channel inputs. I believe there is even freeware. It always comes with a security camera system too so you would likely be able to download it from a manufactures website. Most video capture software is twain based so it will work with pretty much any USB based camera or any video capture card (if you are planing on using cameras with analog video outputs). The better software records multiple channels simultaneously so that simplifies synchronization.

Since you would have extra input channels you could take an old web cam, remove the NIR blocking filter (10 minute job) and have a camera viewing a different part of the spectrum as well. You could do this by just removing the NIR blocking filter from one of the parallel cameras but that would reduce the ability to eliminate near field objects. An even better idea (if you are comfortable with messing with your main cameras) is to remove the filters from both parallel cameras. This would improve low light capability as well as increase detectable bandwidth.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 04:33 AM
A while back I heard of a system for tracking stars and celestial objects from your computer, sounded like a blast . Motor control comes from the computer, but the problem is its all based on star maps, and the maps of objects in our solar system/ catalogued items.
I was thinking it would be pretty neat if someone could tailor a program for tracking objects that SHOULDNT be where they are, filtering out the mundane stuff like planes birds clouds comets planets stars and what not . That way the only things left to track would be anomolous.
I have a flat roof on my appartment , and I was thinking if I could JUST get some cash together it would be gnarly as all hell to get hold of FOUR trackers with inbuilt IR and NV . And of course a lazer rangefinder. But Im pretty skint and have been all my life, so I havent got ANYTHING lying around that I could rebuild into a decent object. Its a fustration because I see a lot of odd crap round my area... would be nice to get a shot of something, if only to prove to my friends I havent lost it lol.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 05:14 AM
Yeah, that's a neat idea. Even software that would just eliminate known stars/planets etc would be nice. I could put up with planes and birds triggering it. That way software based object recognition wouldn't be necessary.

The security software has a sensitivity setting so you can eliminate objects moving or appearing slowly (like stars, moon etc.) and it ususlaly has an area mask feature that allows you to block areas with authorized movements (people walking past windows etc.) This feature might be handy for blocking trees that are blowing in the wind etc.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 05:48 AM
Thing is , my roof is the highest point for quite some distance in one direction, and has a fairly good portion of sky visible in the opposing direction, save for the slice that would be taken out by the buildings the other side of my street , which are about six feet taller give or take a foot. And its flat. And I REALLY wish I could place some Obs equipment up there... As it is, I guess I will have to go with using my Bushnell 525x "deep space" *hahahaha* scope from my bedroom window... until I maybe get a job that doesnt pay sod all lol.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 06:32 AM
Yeah tracking objects is indeed quite an advanced goal but a cool one to consider, i think for now most could manage a simple setup, webcams keep getting cheaper and better in quality, i've seen 2mp for next to nothing and because they're so cheap i doubt most would mind modding them to remove the ir filter or the whole lens setup to expose the ccd directly to a scope which works great.

Here's a general list of some setup ideas i've had in order of advancement, all using basic or decent software for capture on detection etc, depending on their needs.

1. Webcam pointing out a window.

2. Webcam with ir filter removed.

3. Webcam with a small scope and the lens/ir filter removed.

4. Two or more webcams, ir filter/lens removed, with or without scopes, preferably at least one with and one without, any combination of directions, possible to effectively increase resolution and field of view in one direction.

5. Webcam with scope, ir filter/lens removed, motorised to scan the sky back and forth constantly, so it's possible to catch stuff close up for a limited time.

6. Same as above but with any number of webcams scoped and scanning the sky.

7. Again similar setup to above but with proper motion tracking capabilities.

8. dainoyfb's setup!

9. ???

There's so many possible combinations of cameras, sensors, scopes, scanning/tracking and software that anything is possible, i reckon with the right help anyone could manage even a scoped webcam scanning station.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 04:24 PM
hi. great bit of kit but far out my price range. i have a cannon camcorder and i,m looking for info on how to convert it to view infa red for sky watching. any ideas ?

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 10:22 PM
dainoyfb wins.

A few thoughts:

1. Diffraction gratings [pdf] should be mandatory accessory for any optical recording setup. They are cheap. The digiscoping scene offers some promise for developing a low cost + high magnification recording optics market.

2. Ray Stanford took the instrumented research angle about as far as a small group could go back in the 1970's. with PSI. He states they had $2M in gear. In 1970's dollars. Worth reading up on to see what they were doing back then.

3. The most promising of the readily available technologies we have now that the last generation did not is the ability to network sensors. The most interesting of genuinely new ideas I have heard is Peter Davenport's passive radar proposal.[pdf]

I don't know how realistic it is at the moment in terms of off-the-shelf parts availability but my reading of the proposal suggests that we are talking networked PCs with a radio tuner card and some custom software. A functioning passive radar net would seem to be a completely new technology that has only recently become feasible to the amateur and offers completely new possibilities.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 10:28 PM
Do you want it to image only in the infrared or both visible and infrared at the same time? It is almost the same process.

Now I'm talking about the near infrared band because you cannot modify a camcorder to image in the shortwave (thermal) infrared band so don't expect to see an image based on warmth.

To modify your camcorder so that it images in both the visible and near infrared (NIR) bands you need to disassemble the optics and remove the NIR blocking filter that sits between the lens assembly and the focal plain array (imaging chip). Be aware that at this point your camera will no longer be able to record a normal color pallet.

To make the camcorder sensitive to only the NIR band you also need to screw a NIR band pass/Visible band blocking filter onto the front of the lens. These can be purchased at high end camera stores and ebay. Some people make them out of fully developed film negatives.

posted on Mar, 3 2009 @ 10:50 PM
not anonymous
Good idea. Spectral analysis is a valuable tool for this type of research. We would probably be surprised at how many "UFOs" were using incandescent light bulbs if we were implementing it more. The 3 inch telescope on my system does some basic spectral analysis but is mainly designed for waveform analysis. I haven't implemented a camera with a diffraction grating.

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