Indoor/Daytime Alignment on Newer Models with
No Quick Align
With hand control version 2.3 (first shipped with the NexStar
8i SE) and higher, Quick Align, GPS Align and Auto Align are no longer
available. Previously, if a person wanted to align their NexStar
indoors or during the daytime, one of these three alignment methods was
employed. With hand control version 4 or higher, a daytime alignment
(outdoors) is best accomplished with the new
Solar System Align method. With version 2.3 in the daytime/indoors
and with version 4 or higher indoors, Auto Two Star Align can be used as
Point the telescope in the general direction of Polaris (the North Star).
Remember that Polaris is straight north and is the same number of degrees
above the horizon as your latitude on Earth. In other words, if you
live at 45 degrees north latitude, you would point the scope north and up at
a 45 degree angle. Start an Auto Two Star Alignment and use Polaris as the first alignment star, pressing
ENTER and ALIGN to accept the current position of the
scope. When the
scope finishes the slew to the second star, press ENTER and ALIGN to accept this position as well. The scope is now
aligned and tracking.
In the Southern Hemisphere, you will need to use a planetarium
program (such as Planetarium for Palm, Cartes du Ciel, TheSky, etc.) to look
up the current altitude and azimuth of one of the bright alignment stars -
this will be the first of your alignment stars. To see which stars are
available, power up the scope and start an Auto Two Star Align. Scroll
through the available stars and select one. Find that star in your
planetarium program and note the location in the sky. Then, point the
telescope to your best estimation of that location in the sky. Follow
the rest of the procedure as described above for the Northern Hemisphere.
Using Re-Alignment to Improve GoTo
With hand control 2.3, to improve GoTo and tracking (for actual daytime use outdoors), GoTo the
Moon or a bright planet or star. Center it in the eyepiece (you
may need to search around a bit to find it), and use the NexStar
Re-alignment feature to replace one of the "fake" alignment stars. If
you then GoTo a second object and use Re-Alignment to replace the other "fake"
alignment star, GoTo and tracking will be quite accurate.
Re-Alignment on the Sun to Improve
GoTo and Tracking
Also available with hand control 2.3 is a special Re-Alignment
routine using the Sun. Center the Sun in the eyepiece (Caution:
you must use a safe solar filter!!!) and press the ALIGN button.
Select either of the alignment stars for replacement and then press 0 on the
keypad. Follow the directions on the display to replace the star with
the Sun. To improve further, use the hand control's normal GoTo for
any object that can be seen in the daylight and use the NexStar Re-Alignment
feature to replace the other star with that object.