Primaluce Lab EAGLE3 - Control Unit for Telescopes and Astrophotography
Primaluce Lab's EAGLE products became very popular in the UK recently for a good reason. An Eagle is a very conventient device for those who struggle with cable management and wanted to remotely control their telescope mount, imaging camera(s), heating, guiding etc. It also brings additional benefits of a more stable system due to the use of short USB cables and there is less chances of unnoticed unplugged or loose cables in the darkness of the night. Not to mention that these devices are beautifully engineered in a traditional Italian style (if you love Ferrari, you know what we mean... ;o)
Thanks to the innovative design protected by international patent application and Italian utility model, you will no longer need lengthy setup and long cables to control and power your telescope. The EAGLE makes it much easier!
Digital astrophotography can be complicated: if you want to take the best photos of the night sky, you not only need a telescope, mount and a camera… You will also need a list of accessories like a guide camera, motorized focuser, and dew heaters, and they all need to be powered and controlled with the proper software. This can quickly turn any telescope into a complicated mess of tangled cables! EAGLE solves all the problems and make astrophotography easier and quicker!
Don’t let others decide for you what telescope to use and how to make astrophotography! The EAGLE is the first and only really universal device, designed to improve your astrophotography!
all astrophotography software like MaximDL, Sequence Generator Pro, PRISM, PHD Guiding, TheSkyX, BackyardEOS/Nikon, Stellarium, ASCOM platform, SharpCap, FireCapture, Nebulosity, and many more!
all devices with Windows 10 software and drivers from many manufacturers including 10micron, Atik, Avalon-Instruments, Canon, Celestron, Gemini Telescope Design, Losmandy, Moravian, Nikon, PlaneWave, QHYCCD, QSI, SBIG, SkyWatcher, Software Bisque, Starlight Xpress, ZWO and much more!
EAGLE has been recognized as Hot Product 2017 by the famous american astronomy magazine Sky&Telescope!
Technical comment by Filippo: "EAGLE3 is not only a computer, it's the innovative control unit that both controls all the telescope’s devices and powers them all. When I’m at home, I control my EAGLE powered telescope that I install in my backyard and I’m in my living room. When I move searching for the best clear sky, the telescope is in the field and I stay in my warm car and control it as if I would be there! Thanks to the low power consumption, I don’t need big batteries, I can power all my devices also with a compact, light lithium one."
EAGLE3: main features and advantages
Powerful Windows 10 Enterprise 64 bit computer to let you install any astrophotography software and device! The EAGLE eliminates the need for an external computer and you are not limited to a preset list of features - You can install whatever software and device you want to use on the EAGLE. The Windows 10 Enterprise operating system is 100% Windows 10 compatible but is lighter-weight and more stable than traditional PCs that use Windows 10 Home or other OEM versions that come preinstalled with useless bloatware. We have optimized the Windows 10 Enterprise installation on the EAGLE to be a faster operating system (the EAGLE is ready to use just 20 seconds after pressing the ON button) and to maintain better stability during your astrophotography sessions. EAGLE uses a 2.0 GHz Celeron processor (J4005 dual-core with Burst Mode up to 2.7 GHz and 4MB cache) and 4 GB fast DDR4L RAM memory - both designed for low power consumption. This way you have the power you need to run any astrophotography software with a device that’s easy on your battery, improving overall portability.
Fast, high capacity SSD storage to install all your astrophotography software and save your precious data. Different from traditional spinning hard disks, the SSD drive in the EAGLE has no moving parts, so it’s faster and more durable over time. With the flexibility of the EAGLE you can save the pictures on the SSD drive for processing directly in the EAGLE or connect a 3.0 USB flash drive to one of the high speed USB 3.0 ports. This way, if you prefer, at the end of the your session you can quickly and easily move the files to an external computer for processing. EAGLE’s internal components were designed for field use in extended temperature ranges. This way you can relay on it for all night long, in higher humidity conditions since the small amount of internal heat generated by the processor prevents any problems with humidity.
Thanks to EAGLE3 you won't need an external control computer (usually a notebook), a smaller and lighter battery will be sufficient and you will use much less cables (in the picture, with a lithium battery).
USB hub with 4 fast USB 3.0 ports and 4 USB 2.0 ports that can be remotely turned ON/OFF by the EAGLE Manager software. This way you can connect and control lots of devices to the EAGLE and you can remotely turn on/off USB ports if needed, instead of having to manually unplug or plug the cables! This can be a great feature to save power (you can turn off the port you do not use) but you can also reset the port it in case of a device connection failure. Thanks to the EAGLE’s four USB 3.0 ports, you can connect and use the latest fast USB 3.0 cameras - This makes the EAGLE great for planetary imaging since it allows high-speed video capture of the Moon, planets, and Sun at high resolution to the fast internal SSD drive.
Advanced power bridge with 7 power out ports to allow you to power devices directly through the EAGLE. This way you can remove all the other power adapters needed for your 12V devices in your setup. The EAGLE has a separate 12V power input that runs a current up to 16 amps: then, using a special internal board, power is distributed to 7 power out ports - 4 x 12V power out ports are designed to power your camera, mount, focus motor , or other 12v devices. These ports are equipped with safety screw-type connections to prevent unwanted detachment of the cables. The 3 x 0-12V variable power out ports are designed to power dew heaters without the need of an external controller and these can be automated by adding the optional ECCO environmental module for EAGLE. Every power out port comes with a resettable fuse that, in case of problems or overcurrents, temporarily disconnects power from the port and re-activates it once the problem is fixed.
Integrated WiFi system to allow you to remotely control your telescope from any device. To operate EAGLE, you don't need a keyboard and mouse - You can control the EAGLE through a free dedicated app, available on any smartphone, tablet or personal computer running Windows, MacOS, iOS or Android. Turn the EAGLE on, then enable your device's WiFi connection and select the WiFi network provided by the EAGLE. Launch the remote control app and you will have EAGLE desktop on your screen with access to all your astrophotography software. If you like, you can also configure the EAGLE to connect to a pre-existing WiFi or wired/ethernet network allowing remote access via the internet - perfect for remote observatories! Since the EAGLE doesn't use VNC or other software for remote control, it's faster and more stable. For your safety each EAGLE device creates a unique WiFi network, from any other EAGLE that might be nearby. To avoid any other issues at a star party, every EAGLE also has a unique access password known only by you.
Full aluminum PLUS case, CNC made, designed to allow an easy integration with any telescope and to support demanding weights (like a telescope mounted in parallel) without flexure. You can connect the EAGLE to any type of telescope, allowing you to have less cabling with shorter runs that move together with the telescope. This drastically reduces the potential for a cable snagging or detaching while your telescope tracks the stars across the sky. We designed the EAGLE case to be incredibly rigid - rigid enough to a support a parallel telescope (up to 5 kg). The EAGLE case comes with M5 and M6 threaded holes to seamlessly attach PLUS accessories (support rings, guide rings, dovetail bars or dovetail clamps), at at least 2 points to maintain the system's rigidity. For example, the EAGLE can be installed between the PLUS support rings and guiding rings, without any flexure (for guide telescopes up to 5 kg) improving the portability of your telescope and allowing it to be moved to the field pre-assembled, greatly reducing reducing your setup time.
Do you want to automate dew heaters power control based on dew point? Just add ECCO, the Environmental Computerized COntrolled for EAGLE, and it will automatically and continuously monitor the temperature, humidity of the air around your telescope and the temperature of your lenses by calculating the dew point (the temperature below which dew condenses). This way it will vary the heating of dew heaters connected to the appropriate ports avoiding dew to condensate on your optics. You can find ECCO in the suggested accessory list in the bottom part of this page.
Physical external dimensions (in millimeters) of the EAGLE with the position of the threaded holes (M6 in the bottom part to connect to support rings or dovetail clamps and plates, M5 in the upper part to connect to PLUS guide rings).
Telescope control: the EAGLE Manager
EAGLE comes with special "EAGLE Manager" software that, when you start EAGLE and with an easy and intuitive interface, shows devices connection status, power consumption of every device connected, power voltage value and, if you use a battery, its expected lifetime based on its charge. Thanks to EAGLE Manager, with EAGLE you can:
Enable/Disable every 12V power out port: this way you can keep all your devices connected (for example, mount, CCD camera, filter wheel, etc.) and activate them remotely when you turn on the entire system. Each port shows the current consumption that can also be monitored over time.
Set the power out voltage of the 3 x 0-12V power out ports: for example, you can increase or decrease the heat generated by the anti-dewing heaters that are connected to EAGLE without an external controller. Each port shows the current consumption that can also be monitored over time.
Connect or disconnect devices connected to the 4 USB 2.0 ports: this feature is convenient in case of temporary crash of an autoguider or planetary camera, which can then be reset without the need to go to the telescope and disconnect/reconnect a cable.
Check power consumption and battery lifetime: if you power your EAGLE with a battery, a dedicated menu allows you to set the Ampere capacity of your battery and charge percentage when EAGLE is powered on, enabling you to monitor its expected lifetime.
Set WiFi connectivity: to access EAGLE in Access Point mode for field use (use your smartphone, tablet or external computer by connecting directly to EAGLE without the need of a WiFi router) or HOST mode for connecting to your existing network such as the home one.
Remotely turn on/off the entire telescope: EAGLE has a classic ON/OFF button for turn on/off the unit. But it is pre-set to allow the user to turn on or turn off the whole system remotely (when controlled through a network cable connection). After switching on the EAGLE, the user can activate remotely connected devices and use the telescope. At the end of the capture, the user first turns off the various devices (camera, mount, etc.) and then EAGLE.
Comparison of EAGLE3, EAGLE3 S and EAGLE3 PRO with all the main specifications:
POWER UNITS AND POWER CABLES
In order to make the EAGLE system more efficient, we have made special power cables for different devices like mounts or cameras. The EAGLE-compatible power cables have an instrument power jack (for 12V power) on one end, and the EAGLE screw in connector on the other in order to prevent power cables from being disconnected accidentally from the EAGLE. We offer many already made and certified power cables for many devices: if the cable for your equipment is not present among the optional accessories, contact us and we will make it for you.
Thanks to the EAGLE, you will have a single power cable going from your battery or AC power plug to the EAGLE. In the EAGLE box you will already find a 12V cigarette plug power cable (certified for total current up to 16A) and we offer to you other optional power cables with other connectors (like Anderson or banana plugs) or AC adapters (with 5A or 12A max).
PERFORMANCE COMPARISON WITH A MINIPC:
Not only EAGLE3 offers exclusive features for advanced astrophotography, but also all the power of a real computer (superior to a Mini PC) to allow you to use any astrophotography software. In order to test its performance, we used PCMark benchmark and compared EAGLE3/EAGLE3 S/ EAGLE3 PRO with one of the many cheap Mini PCs on the market (where we installed the same EAGLE3 operative system for a precise results comparison). As you can see in the picture below, EAGLE3 offers 32% more performance than a common Mini PC with Intel Celeron N3160 processor, 4GB of RAM and SSD disk; EAGLE3 S still raises the gap by bringing this difference to 82%; EAGLE3 PRO boosts everything to a wonderful +130%!
Scope of delivery
2 WiFi antennas
12V power cable with cigarette plug for EAGLE - 250cm
n.4 M6x8 screws + n.4 M6x12 screws + n.4 M5x8 screws
USB pen with user manual
EAGLE: Apollo 11 lunar module
The Apollo Lunar Module (LM), originally designated the Lunar Excursion Module (LEM), was the lander portion of the Apollo spacecraft built for the US Apollo program to carry a crew of two from lunar orbit to the surface and back. EAGLE is the name of Apollo 11 lunar module that, on July 20, 1969, landed the first humans on the Moon, Americans Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin.
from: Wikipedia (picture: Eagle LEM on the Moon - NASA Apollo Archive)