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Thread: A request for the OBS Staff

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    Question A request for the OBS Staff

    The summit gets some beautiful rime ice formations. Especially the feather type. I think it would be pretty cool to watch a time lapse of rime forming. Is it possible for a camera to be set up when riming conditions are favorable?
    Thanks.
    ~Rich

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    We'll see what they say, but my guess is that its not an easy task.

    The camera would need to be outside where it would gather rime itself.
    Bill
    Next up: Vermont City Marathon: May, 2011
    EasternLight

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    That's true, Bill. But, wouldn't it be fun to watch? Often there's rime forming on the north facing windows and I guess that would work, seeing the camera could be inside, but I was thinking of watching rime form on something like....one of those .50 viewing machines on the deck. That would be cool! Like you said, we'll see what the staff say. Staff? What say you?
    ~Rich

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    I will try to tackle this. We have tried this in house and we have had outsiders try it. There are a couple issues that make this hard to do. One issue is equipment. We do not have any disposable equipment to try this on in an outside exposure. In an inside exposure of just looking at the windows, we do not have any cameras that do an automatic time lapse. This would be something we would have to assign to someone to do all do by manually snapping the pics, something I am sure our bosses would not be too keen on since it would take away from our other work. Next up is time. Rime takes a long, long time to form usually. At least the kind of rime worth looking at in the feather form. Even if we just put the DV camera out for an hour, nothing really exciting would be seen, we've tried. But leaving it out leads to the other problem, heating and icing of the camera itself. The lens begins to fog if you take it out without adjusting to the cold and even then, it starts to rime as well as the equipment itself. So when you take it back in, you run the risk of water damage once things begin to thaw. We did try a heated box with national geographic. Even then though, we were told the results were not very good, but they were able to get other interesting pics, so stay tuned on when that will be possibly published. But that is not to say rime-lapse photography is a total wash. I have some ideas I am working on for a future obscast, so hopefully they look good once I am done.
    Ryan Knapp
    Staff Meteorologist/Night Observer, KMWN (Mt Washington Obs., NH)

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    Ryan,

    A thought would be an unused web camera. True you would have to do the heated box to protect the camera. But, they have the ability to send an image to an FTP site every xx seconds or minutes. For example, I am doing it for the sunrise in Maine off my camera every 10 seconds right now.

    Then you could pull the images and create the time lapse. Just a different approach.
    Brad (a 6288 club member)
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    Quote Originally Posted by Knapper View Post
    I will try to tackle this. We have tried this in house and we have had outsiders try it. There are a couple issues that make this hard to do. One issue is equipment. We do not have any disposable equipment to try this on in an outside exposure. In an inside exposure of just looking at the windows, we do not have any cameras that do an automatic time lapse. This would be something we would have to assign to someone to do all do by manually snapping the pics, something I am sure our bosses would not be too keen on since it would take away from our other work. Next up is time. Rime takes a long, long time to form usually. At least the kind of rime worth looking at in the feather form. Even if we just put the DV camera out for an hour, nothing really exciting would be seen, we've tried. But leaving it out leads to the other problem, heating and icing of the camera itself. The lens begins to fog if you take it out without adjusting to the cold and even then, it starts to rime as well as the equipment itself. So when you take it back in, you run the risk of water damage once things begin to thaw. We did try a heated box with national geographic. Even then though, we were told the results were not very good, but they were able to get other interesting pics, so stay tuned on when that will be possibly published. But that is not to say rime-lapse photography is a total wash. I have some ideas I am working on for a future obscast, so hopefully they look good once I am done.
    Thanks soo much, Ryan. I'll just have to come up an assist you with this project! Be right there...
    ~Rich

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    I've got a summit volunteer week coming up (Nov. 19th-26th), and would enjoy working on this...

    Ryan, how long is typical for the amount of time needed for "good" rime ice to form?
    Last edited by h2oeco; 10-17-2008 at 02:10 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by h2oeco View Post
    I've got a summit volunteer week coming up (Nov. 19th-26th), and would enjoy working on this...

    Ryan, how long is typical for the amount of time needed for "good" rime ice to form?
    This would be great. If MWO can give you FTP space to store the pictures, fine. If not, let me know and I will create an album on the MWO Fotki site. Then the images can be FTPed to the album as they get grabbed.

    Let me know if I can help from flatland country.
    Brad (a 6288 club member)
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    http://public.fotki.com/MWO/saved/2012/ MWO image & video archive site 2006-2012

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    Thanks Brad. I actually have a small wireless web cam (Axis) that is IP-based. This might come in handy, but is still subject to the heat/icing and (not) waterproof issue. Worst case, when conditions are right for rime, I could go out every 1/2 hour, hour, whatever, and take a picture of a specific area/location, and later on, assemble them into a time-lapse movie or animated GIF. Sounds like Ryan has some ideas on this too.

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    If you want to config the camera to FTP images to the MWO Fotki site before heading up there, I can work with you on this. That camera should work well - wireless back to MWO (assuming they have an SSID) - then FTP to Fotki.

    Spyboy has the ability to download the images from Fotki and put them together into a video file. We have done this before. I am not sure if he has a limit to the number of image files. But, he has a lot of compute horsepower for this type of stuff and all the needed video software.

    Pop an e-mail to be at bradstreet @ principia.edu and I can give you the camera settings to do the uploads. If Ryan has other options that seem better, let me know.

    I have created an album for the images at http://public.fotki.com/MWO/saved/misc/rime/ - if we use this approach folks will be able to see the individual files as they get uploaded.
    Brad (a 6288 club member)
    http://bradstreet.zenfolio.com Personal Photo sales site
    http://public.fotki.com/bradbradstreet Personal photo web site
    http://public.fotki.com/MWO/saved/2012/ MWO image & video archive site 2006-2012

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