sensing location of the sun

hey guys,
I'm working on a project and need to find the precise location of the sun from a stationary sensor. I would use a camera but the sun would probably burn out the pixels or not be able to see the sun spot.

I have came up with a design including a lens to focus the image onto an area. Then, I think I could just have a light sensitive area where the focused image is projected. Then, find points above a certain light level, the sun.

I just don't know what sensor to use to detect the focused image. If there was such a thing that could detect light Wattage at any given point that would work or some special type of camera.

If anyone knows of a sensor that could work for the focused image from the lens or any other better way to detect the sun's location in the sky it would really help a lot.

thanks,
Thomas

Google "Arduino Solar Tracker".

Many projects use four LDRs in a square, with some sort of plastic/aluminium profile in between.
Leo..

Or use a GPS and compass - to determine absolute lat/lon position and heading (or bolt the device to the ground), then all you have to do is calculate the elevation and direction of the sun/moon/satellite positions.

Several very good libraries out there.

Wawa:
Many projects use four LDRs in a square, with some sort of plastic/aluminium profile in between.
Leo…

i actually already made tried that and it wasn’t accurate enough.

I can’t use a compass and GPS because the sensor will be changing angle and location on something else stationary on a larger moving object is what I meant

tommyokie:
I’m working on a project and need to find the precise location of the sun from a stationary sensor.

I probably sound really confusing…

is there a sensor to use that can stand harsh sunlight
how could i do this in a camera based way?

Lay/lon will be ok, an MPU-xxxx Will give you tilt, then back to my previous post...

Okay yeah, i get what you mean now, that will work. If it doesn't i also just came up with the idea of having a camera with a welding filter so the sun doesn't burn it out and i could find the position from that image.
thanks

Geometry, about 10% of the processing required for camera-based.
Price similar if you do it right- and works in day/night/clouds etc.

Google "pin hole camera". You do not want nor do you need a lens. We used to start fires using a lens to focus the sun image on a piece of paper. You can also boil water doing the same.

Paul

tommyokie:
i actually already made tried that and it wasn't accurate enough.

It's not clear how inaccurate (if that's the right word) your starting position will be. For example will you need to scan the whole sky? If so then it seems to me the system with 4 LDRs will get you pretty close and then you could switch to something more precise - such as the pinhole camera idea.

...R

A gimballed tracker on a moving vehicle seems very mechanical and unreliable. A camera-based sensor does not have to move.

Manufacturing a pinhole small enough for direct sensing will be difficult. But I like the idea to project onto a surface and observe the surface with a conventional camera or Pixy camera. A little more work with unwinding the perspective distortion but not a lot.