A very nice ST-2000XM camera from SBIG Astronomical Instruments in excellent condition. Comes with CFW-10 filter wheel and AO-7 adaptive optics system. This is a premium, high end single shot colour camera featuring two CCD chips, one for imaging and one for guiding all in one unit.
Comes supplied with all necessary cables.
The ST-2000XCM and ST-2000XCMI cameras are single shot color versions of the ST-2000XM and ST-2000XMI monochrome cameras, These single shot color versions use KAI-2020CM color CCD. This is essentially the same CCD as the KAI-2020M used in the ST-2000XM monochrome camera with the exception of an RGB filter matrix over the pixel array. All the other features are the same as the monochrome versions of the camera:
A relatively large CCD with a generous field of view - nearly the same size as the ST-8XME
More than a million pixels - nearly two megapixels
Antiblooming protection - good for small refractors
High resolution on smaller telescopes with 7.4 micron square pixels
Flexibility of binning 2x2 on larger scopes with good image size
Self-guiding with a built-in TC-237H CCD
Remote Guide Head Port
High speed download - about 4.5 seconds for a full 1.9 megapixel image
Professional software - see below
Easy to use
Full compliment of optional custom accessories
SBIG quality and support
Like their monochrome counterparts, the ST-2000XCM and ST-2000XCMI cameras are the same, except that the ST-2000XCMI does not have the built-in TC-237H tracking CCD and some of the accessories that are included with the ST-2000XCM (see the comparison table below). In March of 2006 we added the Remote Guide Head Port to both the single sensor ST-2000XMI and dual sensor ST-2000XM cameras. Both versions use a high quality interline CCD from Kodak, the KODAK DIGITAL SCIENCE™ KAI-2020CM Image Sensor Megapixel Progressive Scan Interline CCD. The KODAK DIGITAL SCIENCETM KAI-2020CM is a high-performance multi-megapixel image sensor designed for a wide range of scientific, medical imaging, and machine vision applications. The 7.4 mm square pixels with microlenses provide high sensitivity and the large full well capacity results in high dynamic range. The vertical overflow drain structure provides antiblooming protection, and enables electronic shuttering for precise exposure control to 0.001 seconds. Other features include low dark current, negligible lag and low smear. The KAI-2020CM CCD is a 2 megapixel progressive scan detector with an active image area of 1.92 million pixels. The active image area is 1600 x 1200 pixels. This array is 75% larger than the Sony CCD used in competitors' "one-shot color megapixel" cameras, nearly as large as an ST-8XME, and the ST-2000XM is a self-guiding camera, utilizing SBIG's patented dual sensor design. Although the imaging CCD is nearly the same size as the KAF-1602E used in the ST-8XME, due to the smaller pixel size it contains nearly half a million more pixels than the ST-8XME.
The latest KAI-2020CM 2 megapixel CCD has all of the same improvements as the monochrome KAI-2020M: a high gain output amplifier that reduces the read noise by almost half compared to the previous CCD, 10X fewer bright points, and lower dark current. The ST-2000XCM also has the larger 657x495 pixel TC-237H built-in guiding CCD instead of the TC-211. This improvement was the same as the upgraded autoguider installed on the larger ST-8XE, ST-9XE and ST-10XE cameras.
The full frame download time is approximately 4.5 seconds with our high speed USB electronics. This camera is also fully compatible with all of our existing accessories such as the CFW8 filter wheel and AO-7 adaptive optics device. Because the ST-2000XCM has two CCDs (a guiding CCD as well as an imaging CCD) in the same camera head, it is capable of self-guiding without any compromise in the quantum efficiency of the imaging CCD. In other words, not only CAN it self-guide, it can do so without having to double the exposure time to compensate for the guiding feature.
AO-7 Adaptive Optics
The Model AO-7 Adaptive Optics system has two components:
a high speed tip-tilt mirror system for atmospheric correction, and
new image enhancement software implementing the Lucy-Richardson algorithm.
TIP-TILT HIGH SPEED GUIDING:
Utilizing the second guiding CCD as an imaging sensor, the guide star's position is read out at rates of up to 40 times a second, and then the tip-tilt mirror adjusted to hold the star on the designated pixel for the length of the imaging CCD's exposure. The tip-tilt mirror moves and settles to within 20% of the commanded position in a mere 10 milliseconds, a dramatically faster response than any telescope drive is capable of achieving. The result is sharper more pinpoint stars, and more clearly defined nebular features. As a general rule one can guide at 10 frames a second on a 10th magnitude star with a 10 inch (25 cm) telescope.
LUCY-RICHARDSON IMAGE ENHANCEMENT:
SBIG, in association with accomplished astrophotographers Benoit Schillings and Brad Wallis, has developed a "Lucy-Richardson" image sharpening software application that produces dramatic improvements in image detail, visually a 2x improvement. The algorithms used are similar to those used on the Hubble Space Telescope images. The results are the best we have ever seen from amateur telescopes.
The enhancement program is Windows 95 compatible (or Macintosh Power PC if operating a Windows 95 emulator), and resembles SBIG's new Windows processing products, not the well known SBIG "CCDOPS" which runs in the DOS environment. In addition to the enhancement capability, the program allows the display of multiple images, modification of background and range to enhance visibility of detail on the monitor, a crosshairs mode for inspecting pixel values, negative image display mode, and horizontal and vertical image flip.
The AO-7 system can be easily retrofitted to all of the Model ST-7 and ST-8 series dual chip CCD imaging cameras by inserting a new ROM and loading the upgraded software that accompanies the system. This can be easily done by the user at his site. This remarkable system promises to have a profound effect on CCD imaging by reducing the atmospheric turbulence, wind induced vibrations, and eliminating the remaining periodic errors in most telescopes drives.
Please note that the AO-7 system will only operate with the Models ST-7 and ST-8 dual CCD imaging cameras.
The image below shows a 5 minute image of the Ring Nebula taken with an ST-7 attached to a Celestron C-11 Schmidt-Cassegrain telescope at prime focus (efective focal length = 110 inches). The image on the left was taken by "Self Guiding" the Losmandy G-11 mount with a 1 second tracking rate. The image on the right utilized the Model AO-7 with a 0.05 second tracking rate, and then was post processed with the Lucy Richardson software (CCDSHARP).