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Mechanical Design

High Resolution Axes Encoders

All of our PlaneWave direct-drive mounts come standard with high resolution 26-bit encoders on both axes to provide feedback during tracking and slewing.

Direct Drive Motors

For added precision and accuracy the CDK700 not only uses high resolution encoders, but also employs a Direct Drive motor system. Direct Drive motors means that there are no gears to cause backlash or periodic error while slewing and tracking. With the high resolution encoders providing the feedback for the direct drive motors, not only will the telescope track without periodic error or have any backlash at all, but the mount will be able to counter against wind gusts. The direct drive motors can move the telescope at incredible speeds for tracking satellites or just to minimize target acquisition time.

  • L-series mounts utilize high resolution incremental optical ring encoders and the CDK700 and CDK1000 systems include absolute optical ring encoders
  • Stable satellite tracking for LEO and beyond
  • Slew speeds > up to 50 degrees/second
  • 115VAC 20A input: No need for 3-phase power or generators (L-Series mounts can accept either 120VAC/20A to 240VAC/10A input)

The Direct Drive system is composed of 24 coils and 32 neodymium magnets powered by a 3-Phase Axial-Flux Torque Motor.

Combined with a hi-res encoder and stainless steel encoder tape on the circumference, the drive yields 16 million counts per revolution, or about 0.08 arcsecond resolution.

Technical drawing of the direct drive motors in PlaneWave mountings
PlaneWave Astrograph in Baader Planetarium AllSky Dome in front of night sky

We wind our own copper coils that are utilized within the direct-drive motors.