Frequently Asked Questions
About the telescope (tech specs)
Our telescope includes all the elements necessary for astrophotography. The optics, the pointing and tracking system, an embedded computer, an image sensor and motorization. There is also a compartment to accommodate a powerstation type battery.
Stellina has a mobile app that enables you to fully control your telescope using a smartphone or a tablet. With an internet connection you can share your pictures on social media or within the Stellina user community.
Stellina is fully automatized, but it requires some information in order to start photographing. First it needs to know its exact position (coordinates, time), this information is provided using your device’s GPS. Then, Stellina needs to know how it is oriented, the direction it is looking at. To do this, Stellina takes a picture of the sky and looks for recognizable patterns to figure out which stars are in the picture, this process is called astrometry. This step will only work if Stellina can find stars in the pictures, which is why the telescope won’t work if it is pointing at a wall, if it is used during daytime or if the weather is cloudy. Finally, Stellina will adjust its focus position using the same method: it takes pictures of the sky, and find the focus position for which the stars look the sharpest. If the astrometry or the focus steps fail, Stellina will move to a different position and start again: it may fail if an object is obstructing its sight and may succeed on another position. If Stellina can not find a correct position after doing a full turn, then the initialization will fail and you will not be able to observe.
This initialization phase lasts only few minutes.
Thanks to its motorized system, Stellina can track the stars.
When the temperature changes, it may cause a change in focus. To correct this, Stellina integrates an autofocus system. In this way, you can go to sleep with peace of mind, your pictures will benefit from a perfect focus throughout the night.
There are two modes in Stellina:
1) The automatic mode applies the best acquisition parameters and starts the image acquisition. When they reach the embedded computer, it processes them automatically and displays the result.
2) The manual mode allows you to customize the parameters of the acquisition (exposure time, sensitivity, number of poses …) and recover the raw image files that you can then process with your favorite software. This feature will be available in 2019.
Fogging, lens condensation or dewing is a well-known problem in astronomy, too often responsible for interrupting observations. To handle this problem, Stellina incorporates a heating resistance system (dew heater) that activates automatically to ensure you always have a dry optic system!
The power consumption of the instrument is about 2A. Therefore, a battery of 10 000 mAh assures you an autonomy of about 5 hours. If you prefer, it is possible to connect your Stellina directly to the mains thanks to the power supply that is included.
Stellina has a built-in Wi-Fi connection. You do not necessarily need an internet connection to connect to Stellina. The telescope is like a residential (home) gateway to which you can connect via a Wi-Fi connection.
Essential for the proper operation of the instrument, the field derotator is integrated and controlled by the onboard computer. Depending on the target star, the rotator adapts its rotation speed. This also changes the sensor field to achieve perfect framing.
Stellina is a smart and future-proof telescope. Over time, new functions will be developed to improve its performance. If Stellina requires an update, you can download it just one click away directly from your smartphone.
Fully integrated devices usually suffer from the problem of being unable to evolve. Stellina is different. The battery can be changed by accessing the dedicated compartment and the sensors can evolve. To achieve this we will propose evolution kits. The principle is simple, each kit includes the transportation of your instrument to our offices, the installation of the sensor of your choice (from the list of available sensors), the installation of the latest version of the embedded software and a full revision of your instrument. The list of Upgrade Kits will be available in 2019.
We’re looking into this possibility. This could be developed in 2019.
Stellina telescope allows us to do it. This feature will be available in 2019.
No, it’s not possible at the moment.
No. For now, the mobile app is only developed for smartphones and tablets.
The telescope comes with a tabletop tripod and a microfibre cloth to clean the lens. Power supply is not provided.
Yes, the telescope comes with an adjustable tripod and its tools (spike and pivoting pod feet).
Stellina requires a power source delivering at least 5.1 +/- 0.1V and at least 2.4A on a USB Type-C connector.
For that, two solutions exist:
– an external power adapter
– an external battery (e.g. powerbank used to charge your smartphone)
They are not provided with Stellina but you can find and purchase them easily in stores.
About the use of Stellina
No. Stellina uses wi-fi to communicate with your smartphone but it does not mean you need an Internet connection neither data. When you set up the telescope, you just need to go into your wi-fi settings and connect on Stellina signal (working similarly to Bluetooth with other devices), so that the app can control the telescope.
You only need data/internet if you want to share pictures on social media, or update the app.
Please note that you will only be able to use your 4G/data to browse on the Internet, because your wi-fi will be already used by Stellina.
No, the device is designed to be used by both amateur and advanced astronomers.
Yes, the telescope has a light pollution filter that allows you to use it in urban or suburban areas (small cities). However, nothing will ever replace a dark and pure sky. Please, also note that some objects that are visible from the countryside are more difficult to observe in urban areas.
Thanks to its ease of use, you could think that Stellina is for beginners, but you’d be making a serious mistake! Its simplicity makes the telescope accessible to beginners but also meets all the needs of the advanced amateur astronomer. Our mission is simple: to help you discover, progress and excel with a single telescope.
Our telescopes are very safe devices and are suitable for beginners up to experienced amateur astronomers. The minimum user age we recommend is 14.
Yes, you can connect multiple smartphones and tablets to Stellina at the same time. One of them will be designated as the administrator and the other users will be able to see the pictures taken by the instrument.
The planets have a very small apparent diameter (about 0.01° for Jupiter), making unexciting to observe them using Stellina. It will be possible to see the rings of Saturn and the bands on Jupiter but nothing more than that.
Yes, single exposures can last up to 30 secondes. There is not limit on the number of pictures the telescope can stack.
The manual mode will allow you to choose your own settings for image acquisition (exposure time, sensitivity, number of exposures…) and image processing (luminosity, contrast…). You will also be able to download the raw images to process them yourself with your favorite software. This functionality will be available in 2019.
About the pictures
Yes, Stellina is a telescope for astrophotography. Taking photographs is the only way to observe the sky with the instrument. Modern high performance sensors and an increasingly polluted observation environment pushed Vaonis to make this choice.
You can discover the first photos taken with the prototype telescope here.
Stellina is a so-called “large field” astrograph (astrographic camera) because its field is about 1° x 0.7°. To get a better idea, the sun and the moon represent a field of about 0.5°, so they perfectly fill the field of the sensor. Stellina is designed to take pictures of deep sky objects: galaxies, nebula, star clusters or comets etc. However, it depends on their apparent size, not all stars are observable (no single telescope can observe everything) but a catalogue of hundreds of stars is already waiting for you!
Constellations cannot be photographed because they are too large to fit into a telescope field. These types of images require a simple camera.
The planets have a very small apparent diameter (eg, about 0.01° for Jupiter), making unexciting to observe them using Stellina. It will be possible to see the rings of Saturn and the bands on Jupiter but nothing more than that.
There are two ways to retrieve the images: either by saving the final image in JPG format, or by downloading the unprocessed raw files in FITS format, using a USB key (feature available in 2019)..
Our picture of M42 was taken with a prototype of Stellina in which the autofocus was not developed yet. A common tip, known by many astrophotographers, consists in placing fishing line on the optics to help adjusting the focus. This technique was used to take the picture of the Orion nebula, this is why you can see diffraction spikes.
Yes, thanks to the new products that allow you to display your smartphone or tablet screen on a tv (screen mirroring) : Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Amazon Fire…
The images are stocked directly on your smartphone/tablet.
For now, we only offer delivery to European countries, United-States, Canada and Japan.
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland and United Kingdom.
If for some reason you want to return your products, you can return your merchandise to our office up to 14 days from your item’s ship date.
Our telescopes come with a two-year guarantee.
In case of breakdown or breakage, we invite you to contact our service department. After a diagnosis with one of our technicians, your telescope will either be repaired remotely through a software upgrade or sent back to our factory for repair.
The telescope will be shipped or available in stores by the end of 2018.
Yes, your card will be charged immediately. However, you can ask the cancellation of your preorder and the total refund of your payment anytime by contacting us.
About the mobile app
The mobile app is compatible with any versions above iOS 8 (included) or Android 5 (included).
Yes, you can download the Stellina mobile app for free. We will keep you updated when it is available on the app stores.
We regularly attend events, tradeshows or stargazing parties to present Stellina to the public. We suggest you subscribe to our newsletter or follow us on social media to be informed about our upcoming events. If you’re organizing an event and wish us to give a product demo, feel free to send us an email at email@example.com
Stellina is entirely assembled and configured in Montpellier, in the South of France.
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