I have finally found some time to use my Raspberry Pi as timelapse camera to capture some startrails. I found this useful page showing all the details needed to set the Pi camera to a maximum of 6s exposure. I got the best results by setting the shared video memory to the maximum setting of 256Mb. Otherwise the image numbers would have gaps.


Startrails taken with a Raspberry Pi

Now, I just need to repeat this next time there is good weather and new moon. Preferably I’m going to do this in a slightly darker spot with less light pollution.

I pointed /etc/rc.local to this srcipt (adapted from the above mentioned website)

sleep 120 
cd /home/pi/starttrails 
raspistill -bm -tl 0 -v -set -ISO 800 -awb off -awbg 1,1 -t 14400000 -ss 6000000 -o %06d.jpg 
shutdown -hP now 

The pictures were assembled with the following lines:

# trail.jpg is a copy of the first immage 000000.jpg
for f in 0*.jpg
   echo $f
   convert trail.jpg $f -gravity center -compose lighten -composite -format jpg trail.jpg

I have also turned the stills into a short timelapse video:

~/bin/ffmpeg-3.1.4-64bit-static/ffmpeg -r 15 -i %6d.jpg -vcodec libx264 trail.mp4 

About Uli

Grown up in Kiel, now living in Reading.
This entry was posted in Astronomy, Computer, nature and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Startrails

  1. Pingback: Star trails | Uli's blog

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