When adding new Flat Events with AutoFlats, most of the hard work will be done for you automatically at the time it is added to the AutoFlats run.  Each Flat Event requires specification of a Filter (or that no filter is used), a Binning Mode and the number of flat frames to capture.  Optionally, depending on your rig, you can specify Camera Gain, Camera Offset, Camera Rotation and Focus Position. Below is a brief description of each of the properties belonging to a Flat Event:



  • Active / Inactive: A Flat Event with a checked box is considered “active” and will be processed as part of the AutoFLats run. If the Flat Event is not checked, it will not be captured. It may be desirable to save a Flat Event of later by adding it now and unchecking it, then, at a later time, marking it as active.
  • Filter (required): A specific filter or specifying that no filter is used is required for all flat events.  When the filter is changed, the number of flat frames to capture will automatically update itself to the number you have specified in that filter’s “Flat” properties. When set in the context of a Light Event, this property will be automatically populated in order to match the Light Event.
  • Binning (required): The binning mode to use for the Flat Event frames. If your camera does not support binning, this field will simply show as “1x1”. When set in the context of a Light Event, this property will be automatically populated in order to match the Light Event.
  • Gain and Offset (optional): If supported by your camera, you can specify the Gain and Offset values used for flat frame capture. When set in the context of a Light Event, these properties will be automatically populated in order to match the Light Event.  Note that, if using a DSLR, the Gain field will be used to select ISO.
  • Angle (optional): This field refers to the mechanical position of the rotator (camera) and not the target or sky angle of the corresponding Light Event.  If it is not defined, the rotator position will remain unchanged. If you use a mechanical rotator, it will automatically match the angle used when capturing the Light Event.  Note: If you use the “Manual Rotator” (i.e. your hands), you can set this value to any number value you like (typically whatever helps you remember where to manually position your rotator… mark 1, mark 2, etc).  During the AutoFlats run that uses manual rotation, it will pause and wait for you to move the manual rotator to the position specified in this Flat Event.
  • Focus Position (optional): This field refers to the position of the focuser when the Flat Event is captured. If it is not defined, the focuser position will remain unchanged. Note: You may have noticed that definition of an absolute Focuser Position may not actually equate to focus if the flat frame is taken at a different time (temperature) than the light frame.  Fear not, AutoFlats will attempt to automatically modify the focus position used for the light frame using the temperature compensation properties defined in your sequence. If AutoFlats does not have the ability to do this, you will receive a warning prior to starting the AutoFlats Run and the Focus Position will be used unmodified.
  • Capture: This field specifies the number of flat frames to capture for a Flat Event.  The Event is considered complete when this number of frames have been saved to disk.  The default capture count for new Events can be set “per-filter” [add link to filter setup].
  • Progress: This field, also a progress bar, will show both the number and percentage of flat frames that are complete. Tip: This field is editable. Clicking on it will allow you to manually adjust the number of frames that have been captured.
  • Flat Setup Hints: In general, this field will show the source of any hints extracted in order to “match” the Flat Event with some corresponding Light Event.  In other words, it answers the question: How did AutoFlats decide on the automatically generated values for the Flat Event? The type and color of the icon indicate that Flat Hints were or were not able to source matching Light Event properties from somewhere.


  • From a FITS file: A colored file icon indicates that the hints came from a FITS file. Hovering over the field with the mouse cursor will reveal the path of the actual FITS file that was used.  A “grayed out” file icon indicates that some properties were extracted from the FITS file, but that the Flat Event may need your attention in order to actually match the properties of the corresponding Light Event.
  • From Sequence Flat Hints: A colored target icon indicates that the hints came from a Light Frame’s Flat Hint Marker. This is a new marker that SGPro leaves behind for all light events.  For all intents and purposes, Flat Hints are invisible to you, but AutoFlats knows how to find and use them. A “grayed out” target icon indicates that some properties were extracted from the Light Event, but that the Flat Event may need your attention in order to actually match the properties of the corresponding Light Event.
  • No Flat Hints found: A “grayed out” question mark icon will indicate that the Flat Event was unable to source Flat Hints from anywhere.


The Flat Setup Hint field is automatically populated based on how the Flat Event was added.  That said, clicking on the field will allow you to override the hint source manually by picking a specific Light Event from the sequence or by choosing a specific FITS file.  In either case, choosing a new Flat Hint source will automatically update all properties in the Flat Event to “match”.  This field has no explicit influence over how a Flat Event is captured and only serves to modify the preceding fields that actually do govern the capture process.


Note: All fields can be edited in place by clicking on them. Depending on the field, when clicked upon, the appropriate control required to edit will appear. Saving that value can be accomplished by using the “Return” key or by using the “Tab” key or mouse click to cause that control to lose focus. Pressing the “Esc” key will cancel the field’s edit and restore the field to its original value. There are cases in which certain Flat Event properties may not be available and clicking on those fields will result in no change (e.g. Camera doesn’t support Offset, etc)


Here is an example of some Flat Events that were populated using the “All Light Events” option: