Freedom Find™ - tracking made easy!
Sky-Watcher's EQ8 mount now includes patented Freedom Find (dual-encoder) technology which allows the telescope to be moved manually or electronically in either axis without losing its alignment or positional information. After moving to a new object the telescope will automatically begin to track the new object accurately. No re-setup is required in one observing session.
The Sky-Watcher EQ8 mount is equipped with auxiliary encoders on both the R.A. axis and Dec. axis. Therefore, the mount can keep tracking its current position even when a user unlocks the clutches and rotates the mount in R.A. axis and Dec. axis by hand. With this feature, a user can manually operate the mount anytime without worrying about losing the mount’s alignment status.
When the user wants to operate the mount with the SynScan hand control again, no alignment is required and all that is needed to be done is to re-lock the clutches. This feature can be enabled or disabled on the SynScan hand controller.
Permanent Periodic Error Correction
The Sky-Watcher EQ8 mount is equipped with an index on its R.A. worm. Thus the motor controller can keep tracking the current position of the worm. After a proper PEC training routine, in which the training data is stored in the motor controller permanently, a user can start the periodic error correction (PEC) at any time to improve the tracking performance for short focal length astrophotography.
A training process is not required in the next observing session (assuming that the polar alignment is accurate), thus this is a Permanent Period Error Correction (PPEC). A user can train the mount with manual guiding or auto-guiding. For detailed instructions please refer to the SynScan hand controller manual.
Batch Exposure Function
The Sky-Watcher EQ8 mount is equipped with a SNAP port which can control the shutter release of a camera. Working with the SynScan hand control’s “Camera Control” function, a user can take batch exposures when doing astrophotography. Up to 8 groups of “Exposure-time & Frames” combinations can be set on the SynScan hand controller. For detailed information, refer to the SynScan hand controller manual.
The Sky-Watcher EQ8 mount is equipped with two home position sensors. Working with the SynScan hand controller, the mount can be placed to the same home position after cycling the power.
This feature is almost essential for anyone wishing to control their mount remotely. If power fails the homing function allows the mount to easily re-establish its position. The mount will always know where its slew limits are eliminating the risk of driving your telescope and imaging equipment into the pier. For detailed information, refer to the SynScan hand controller manual.
Dual Encoder Design
With the patented dual encoder design, you may move the telescope to any positon manually or electronically without deactivating the tracking mode first. After moving to a new object the telescope will automatically begin to track the new object accurately. No re-setup is required in one observing session.
It utilises 0.9 degree per step bipolar stepper motors to get high resolution. It uses stepper motors without reduction gears to drive the worm shaft directly - so as to remove the drive errors caused by reduction gears. This design also eliminates backlash as there are no additional gears between the motors and the worm drive.
Couple this solidly-built mount withthe included SynScan computer controller to utilise many of the same functions and feature as Sky-Watcher's most advanced SynScan Mounts. It can also be controlled by SynScan Tour or EQMOD using the Shoestring USB2EQ5 cable directly to the mount without the need for the SynScan Controller.