I finished building PAN006 in September of 2017, with the exception of weatherproofing the mount. I was offered a home in a dome at Wheaton College (Norton, MA) which I gratefully accepted. This required me to add software to POCS for controlling the Astrohaven 7 foot dome (i.e. opening at the start of observing and closing when done), which I did; this was my second major contribution, after an earlier re-working of the Arduino code.
Unfortunately, the automation of the dome hasn’t worked as well any of us would like: the Astrohaven system has a very simple control interface, but it is really too simple; it isn’t sufficient to prevent tangling the straps that move the shutters of the dome, which can then result in the dome being stuck open or closed. If it is stuck closed, then you have a very tricky job to open the dome. And if it is stuck open, then you have to rush to repair it before rain next arrives, and in Massachusetts that is a matter of hours or days most of the time.
This problem of tangled straps occurred at least 5 times over 11 months of automated operation, most recently happening just 6 hours after I re-enabled the automated operation. Sigh. Today I pulled the scope out of the dome and brought it home, where I plan to weatherproof the mount, along with replacing the SSD (storage) on the NUC and upgrading Linux to Ubuntu 18.04 (the version we now recommend, which wasn’t the case when I built the scope).
I also need to find a new site for PAN006. I’ve had a couple of offers from folks in the past, but will need to see if they are still willing to host the scope. I’d like to find a nearby location first, as that makes it easier to work out any problems before installing it at a remote site.