The SMS Seeing Monitor is a unique professional quality monitor for use in the Southern Hemisphere. Since there is no Southern pole star like Polaris for southern Hemisphere observers, the SM-1 and similar devices that stare at one star without tracking will not work in Southern Hemisphere locations. To take seeing measurements in southern locations, observatories often resort to a DIMM system which requires an adequate optical system, mount, enclosure, computer, etc., and can end up being quite elaborate and expensive. Based on the need and requests from several Southern Hemisphere observatories, the SMS is being designed as an alternative to such elaborate systems. We expect the first units to be available by Fall of 2016. For more information about this new Southern Hemisphere Seeing Monitor, please contact SBS.
This product is in development
The measurement principal for the Southern Hemisphere Seeing Monitor (SHSM) is the same as for our other seeing monitor. The difference is that it needs a larger aperture to be able to get accurate results on the fainter stars available near the Southern Pole. So, the Southern Hemisphere Seeing Monitor uses a two axis gimbal driven by lead screws to direct a 100 mm Maksutov-Cassegrain telescope towards the pole. The gimbal can slew over a 20x20 degree field of view. The monitor needs a star of at least 5th magnitude for a good seeing measurement. Stars near the pole are selected as the star must stay on the CCD for at least 2 minutes without the telescope tracking, since the motors are stationary during a measurement. Custom software will be included to drive the Seeing Monitor and take measurements.