Tracking meteorites using Raspberry Pi #Space #Photography #RaspberryPi @IEEESpectrum @Raspberry_Pi

We’ve all seen the footage on social media: bright fireballs as asteroids burn through the sky. David Schneider decided he wanted to capture images of meteorites crossing the night sky.

So I opted to build a different kind of all-sky camera, one that is also based on a Raspberry Pi but that uses the Raspberry Pi High Quality color camera, following the lead of a project called, reasonably enough, Allsky Camera.

The hardware for this project consists of a Raspberry Pi and either the Raspberry Pi HQ camera or one of the purpose-built planetary cameras made by ZWO. To be truly “all sky,” the camera should be equipped with a fish-eye lens having a 180-degree field of view.

Recognizing that my home is surrounded by trees, I opted for a lens with a narrower (120-degree) field of view. A modern Raspberry Pi 4 is recommended, but I used a several-year-old Raspberry Pi 3 Model B simply because I had it on hand. I decided to use a US $60 Raspberry Pi HQ camera over a ZWO camera because it offered higher resolution.

Following the guidance provided in a very nice tutorial video, David set up the Allsky Camera software on the Pi, running it in a “headless” configuration—meaning without a monitor or keyboard. He accesses it wirelessly from a laptop through a local area network using SSH.

See the video below and more on IEEE Spectrum here.

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