The first wide field videocamera for night sky patrol went in operation the december 2008. A Watec 902H2 Ultimate equipped with a Computar 2.6 mm f/1.0 auto-iris wide-field lens was placed inside an old “cooker”. I placed a 12 W warming resistance inside the “cooker” to avoid winter frost and moisture outside the acrylic dome. This setup rises the inside temperature about 5 °C to 10 °C above the external temperature. The humidity inside the dome is kept low (typically 30 % relative) with grains of desiccant. The software UFOCapture is used to trigger heavenly flashes and store AVI files of the detected events.
After some years of operation the first all-sky camera was replaced with several narrow-field watecs. Now (2018) the setup consists of 7 cameras in Gnosca and 6 in Locarno.
Meteors and Sprites
In a typical clear night the surveillance setup detects +2 mag meteors. All the captured meteors and other luminous phenomena like sprites are published here.