Akkana's Java Star Chart
Here's a Java star chart program which starts out aimed at one of
the most interesting areas of the night sky currently visible at
this time of year.
You can show other areas of the
sky by editing the coordinates or scale, then hitting return.
Click on an object to display more information about that object.
The database contains stars down to about magnitude 7 (but it takes
quite a while to download all those stars over the net).
Have a problem running this applet? Please see my
bug report page.
It's all written by me, and you're welcome to look at it,
but not to remove the copyright notices or to use it commercially
The algorithms come primarily from Peter Duffett-Smith,
Practical Astronomy with your Calculator,
available from Willman-Bell.
The current star database used is the Yale Bright Star Catalog;
I've also used the
Skymap database, both courtesy of the
Astronomical Data Center,
parsed via a CGI script of my own.
Currently I'm showing only stars down to 8th magnitude, for space reasons.
- Constellations lines and names (I'd add this sooner if I
could find an online database -- if you know of one, I'd love
to hear about it)
Swimming Elk Software, creators of Coeli - Electric Planisphere
has been nice enough to offer a database of constellation lines,
which will be added as soon as I can make time.
- Easier printing -- since Netscape won't print a Java applet,
for now you'll have to use your OS's ability to print a window.
Under Unix/X, I use xwd/xwpr; under Windows 95, you can save the
window to the clipboard via the print screen key, then paste it
into a drawing app and print it from there. I wish I knew of an
easier way! I'm working on a solution.
- Comet Brewington -- has an eccentricity of 1.0, and I'm not sure
how to deal with that mathematically.
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