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Software Bisque TheSky Fusion Control Unit - SKY-FUSION

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SKU: SWB-SKY-FUSION

Software Bisque TheSky Fusion Control Unit

Software Bisque has created an innovative telescope control unit called TheSky Fusion. This control unit combines power, communication, and control to provide the ultimate imaging session experience. No longer will you have to deal with the chaos of hardware integration and disparate device control. You can easily attach TheSky Fusion directly to your telescope mount, and the included TheSky software will integrate the computer, power distribution, wireless multi-device connectivity, and remote control!

With TheSky Fusion, you can connect your mount, camera, autoguider, focuser, filter wheel, rotator, and dew heater to your tablet, smartphone, laptop or desktop. You can use any modern web browser through WiFi, you can use a remote desktop application, or even use an Ethernet connection. You don't need an internet connection, but the the control unit benefits from being online.

Included

TheSky Fusion's external LCD display provides two lines of red text, sixteen characters long, that gives descriptive messages, in real-time, about the status during startup, imaging runs, automated pointing calibration, and debugging information.

Software Bisque has also included a female Losmandy and Vixen dovetail to help connect the control unit body to your telescope setup. There are 60 mm spaced 1.4-20" mounting holes. This spacing is used by many vendors such as ADM Accessories. The holes are located on the top and bottom of the aluminum housing.

How Do I Connect TheSky Fusion?

You have several options when it comes to connecting your TheSky Fusion control unit. When connecting to your devices, you can connect wirelessly via WiFi, whether as a hot spot or using a pre-existing network. You can also use the Ethernet port for a hard-wired connection.

TheSky Fusion uses a Gigabit Ethernet for a high-speed wired connection, which gives the best possible responsiveness, data transfer, and reliability. For wireless communication, TheSky Fusion comes with an internal antenna.

TheSky Fusion Unit Body

The body of TheSky Fusion case is CNC-machined 6061 aluminum housing and anodized red. The dimensions are as follows:

  • Width: 19.7 cm (7.8")
  • Height: 7.6 cm (3")
  • Length: 13 cm (5.1")
  • Weight: 1.9 kg (4.2 lb) with the dovetail mounting bracket

Computer, GPU, and Operating System

Software Bisque's TheSky Fusion uses a 64-bit Hex-Core CPU a 1.8 GHz. This coupled with the eMMC RAM and discrete GPU, the CPU gives a fantastic image acquisition experience regarding smooth Sky Chart updates, efficient live stacking, and fast image archiving.

Regarding computer power requirements, TheSky Fusion uses an ARM-based CPU. The processor's approximate power footprint varies, as can be seen below:

  • 2 Watts - processor idle
  • 4 Watts - typical workload usage
  • 8 Watts - maximum CPU draw

TheSky Fusion requires about four to ten times less power than the typical laptop.

The GPU is discrete and supports OpenGL graphics hardware acceleration to provide panning and zooming.

Software Bisque uses the Linux (Ubuntu 18 LTS) 64-bit operating system.

Memory Specifications

When it comes to memory, TheSky Fusion has 4 GB of DDR4 RAM, 128 GB of high-speed eMMC storage, and 256 GB of mass non-volatile storage. TheSky software uses about 5 GB of high-speed access memory, and the complete Gaia stellar database uses another 90 GB of mass storage. This leaves 90 GB high-speed memory and 165 GB free mass storage left, which is enough for several full-frame images, even if a large-format CMOS camera is used. This allows for about 8500 images at 30 MB each or about 2500 images at 100 MB each.

TheSky Fusion GPS Specifications

Software Bisque has included a GPS function which provides accurate time and position data. Using GPS not only simplifies setting up the equipment, it eliminates common mistakes that can happen when entering location or time. The real-time access to the site's position and time means that the telescope can be pointed accurately using TheSky Imaging's TPoint telescope modeling. Like the WiFi antenna, the GPS antenna is internal, though can be replaced with an external antenna (not included).

TheSky Fusion Ports

First, we have the eight external power ports. These are the red and black ports. They require Anderson Power Product's Powerpole connectors and cabling. This type of connector is available to purchase separately. They use a variety of amperages and wire gauges such as 15A/30A/45A contacts supporting 10-20 AWG wires.

Next, there are four USB3.0 ports that can drive CMOS cameras and other astronomy equipment. If you need more than four USB ports, you can use the power ports by connecting a USB adapter (not included) configured for a 5V output.

Then we have the RJ45 Ethernet port with a 1000/100/10 Base-T.

Finally, TheSky Fusion has an external monitor port which is made up of a HDMI 2.0 connector. This video out gives you the opportunity to connect to an HDMI compatible screen or monitor for better viewing of TheSky software. It supports up to 4K @ 60Hz and audio out.

TheSky Astronomy Software

TheSky™ was designed with thirty-five years of customer feedback in mind. This software gives access and lets you use many different functions such as:

  • Operate your mount, camera, guider, focuser, filter wheel, rotator, and more from a single application
  • Gives power switching to the integrated 5V/8V/12V power ports
  • Gives graphics acceleration
  • Access to the complete Gaia star catalog and millions of other objects
  • Comes with TheSky LTI interface for Paramount mount users
  • Displays comets, satellites, asteroids, planets, Sun, Moon, Saturn's and Jupiter's major moons
  • Performs Image Link and All Sky Image Link astrometric solutions
  • Automated telescope pointing calibration
  • Advanced autoguiding
  • Automated focus using either @Focus2 or @Focus3
  • Filter Wheel support
  • Rotator support
  • Fully scriptable using JavaScript or Python
  • and more!

Supported Devices

Mounts

  • Astro-Physics
  • Celestron
  • iOptron
  • Losmandy with Gemini Control System
  • Meade
  • Sky-Watcher
  • Software Bisque
  • Takahashi

Cameras

  • Canon DSLR
  • Finger Lakes Instruments
  • QSI
  • Mallincam
  • Starlight Xpress
  • ZWO

Filter Wheels

  • Chuck Faranda's RDC Shutter
  • Finger Lakes Instruments
  • QHYCCD
  • QSI
  • Starlight Xpress
  • Xagyl Communications
  • ZWO

Focusers

  • AAF2
  • Arduino Focus
  • Astro-Physics (telescope mount's built-in focuser controller)
  • Astromechanics Canon Lens Controller
  • Baader Planetarium
  • Celestron
  • Finger Lakes Instruments
  • Gemini (telescope mount's built-in focuser controller)
  • Lake Side
  • Meade (telescope mount's built-in focuser controller)
  • MicroFocuser
  • MoonLite
  • Officina Stellare
  • Optec
  • Pegasus Astro
  • PrimaLuceLab
  • Rigel Systems
  • Starizona
  • Starlight Instruments
  • Technical Innovations

Rotators

  • MoonLite
  • Officina Stellare
  • Optec
  • Software Bisque