(FOR THE SAKE OF PEACE, I GOT RID OF THE CANNON TITLE - I wonder if the number of viewers will reduce drastically :)
(Credits for picture and video - katjahommel.com)
This is a laser mounted on a cannon-like structure made for a single purpose: Point to the sky and trace the position of a satellite. It gets data form a small program via Serial port and shoots to the infinity. It's not easy if you haven't done anything with electronics, but if you learn a couple of things, it's pretty basic. The design has two major drawbacks, that could be improved later:
• The code works but the movement is Jaggy when tracking in realtime. Converting angles expressed in doubles (A decimal point number with a lot of digits like 225.365844E) to the limited steps of a motor is just impossible. Possible gearing and fine-tuning to make movement smoother on slow tracking situations are still lacking
• The cabling is still cumbersome and it won't allow fluid 360° movement in the Base (Azimuth) axis. So when passing from 359.9° to 0° the motor will have to go a whole revolution back in order to keep the track.
Being warned, we can start: