View Full Version : Free astronomy programs

February 26th, 2006, 07:16 PM
I found these two great astronomy programs yesterday. Their both free and run on Windows, Macintosh OSX, and Linux. They use OpenGL so make sure you have up to date drivers installed or they will preform slow & laggy.

Celestia (http://www.shatters.net/celestia/) is a 3D representation in of the Milky Way and neighboring galaxys in real time. It has over 10GB of addons from models of the ships from Star Trek to tours of the solar system and various space missions. Theres alot of depth so make sure you go to Help>Controls and atleast learn the basics before you start exploring. I've only been useing this for a day so I've barely scratched the surface.

The second is Stellarium (http://stellarium.sourceforge.net/). It shows you a rendered night sky in real time. So if you want to know if a particular star, planet, nebula, or constellation is going to be visable tonight just type it in and press enter.

February 26th, 2006, 07:43 PM
Here I can add Kstars (I think it's linux only, it's in the repos). Not very fancy in terms of graphics, but does perfectly what it should. Actually it's a very well made star map + you can connect a telescope to the PC and control it through the Kstars (never tried this though, I only have one old telescope, I can't connect it to the PC).

February 26th, 2006, 07:46 PM
*slaps windows*
lol, because I've seen those windows commericals with the guy and the kid saying that they can view stars and stuff...

that's cool..I saw kstars in knoppix :D

February 26th, 2006, 08:06 PM
check out freshmeat.net, they have a huge listing of astronomy programs.

February 26th, 2006, 08:11 PM

though I got seg faults from celestia and stellarium, but I've been getting a lot lately... including most multimedia programs, including xmms, mplayer, and audacious... but not beep-media-player or vlc... maybe it's a sign?

February 26th, 2006, 08:21 PM
Gotta try it out! ;)

August 26th, 2006, 03:56 PM
Wow, I know this is an old thread but I had to say; Stellarium is amazing!! Super slick and practical!

August 26th, 2006, 04:39 PM
Wow, I know this is an old thread but I had to say; Stellarium is amazing!! Super slick and practical!

Stellarium is very similar to Starry night backyard in the windows world..my daughter loves Stellarium...