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Triangulation and Orbit Determination

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David Anderson

Dunure, South Ayrshire, Scotland

Camera / Lens Combination:

Watec 902H2 Ultimate & Cosmicar Pentax 6mm f0.75, Az 202.4, Ev 41.4

Watec 902H2 Ultimate & Cosmicar Pentax 6mm f0.75, Az 111.0. Ev 37.0

Watec 902H2 Ultimate & Computar 12mm f0.8, Az 022.3, Ev 30.7

With initial inspiration sparked by the US Apollo programme, David first became interested in astronomy at the age of 8. His first telescope was a 4" Newtonian and with that he managed to observe objects such as the Ring Nebula in Lyra. His interest in meteors was triggerd by a chance, unaided, view of a large fireball, probably a Geminid. Although he then pursued a career in medicine, most recently general practice, his interest in astronomy never really diminished and he recently constructed a roll off roof observatory housing a Takahashi TSA 120mm refractor.

In 2012, after finding Robert Cobain's information about meteor observation on the internet, he set up a single NNW facing Watec camera using a Computar lens mounted on his self constructed observatory in Low Craighead, South Ayrshire. By chance this camera recorded a large fireball over Scotland in October 2013 that resulted in contact with NEMETODE. David then redirected his camera to the south in order to participate in the network and since then has upgraded the lens to a HS607EX-ASP Cosmicar Pentax 6mm F0.75 CS. He has also modified his software settings in order to improve overall sensitivity with the hope that this collaboration will result in some spectacular and scientifically useful data in the future. David deployed a second, identical system in July 2014 and a third in September 2014.

During the latter half of 2016, David moved house to Dunure, a location approximately 10km north of Low Craighead, where he built what he describes as a "hutch" to house the computers that capture data from his video cameras. David writes, "The "hutch" is weather proof and allows me to keep the three computers attached to the cameras on all the time. I have never been keen to have computers in the house on all the time but this allows me to do that even when I am away on holiday. I have power via an armoured cable underground and another conduit with Cat 6 cabling creating a network that I can access in my study with another PC and operate each computer/camera remotely using Windows Remote Desktop Connection. I can even perform the analysis with UA2 on each machine while controlling it from the study. It works well and if I have to work on an individual machine for any reason such as upgrading where restarting is needed I have a good quality KVM switch and monitor in the "hutch" so I can switch between machines. I should add that the cabling at the back of the machinery is like spaghetti junction....but it works ... so far!"

David's other passion is geology, with a particular specialism in Scottish Agates. The co-author of a book on the subject, David still finds time to search for additional specimens during his regualr field trips.