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With comet Lovejoy on the scene, is it about time Stellarium had a comet
feature. One that renders the comet with approximately correct coma and tail
length and orientation.
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Realistic comet rendering has been on the agenda for quite some time. Adding
it requires good knowledge of OpenGL, and our only OpenGL programmer has been
too busy dealing with other things to pay attention to Stellarium for the last
I thought it would not be simple. I suspect learning to program for Stellarium
requires C++ ?
Indeed. More than that, it requires OpenGL, which is much more difficult.
I wonder if we could adopt a script to do this, at least in a crude sense.
Since Stellarium will plot solar system objects that have their orbital
elements in the ssytem.ini could we get it to read in a .png of a facsimile of
And if we were to add galactic and ecliptic coordinate systems would writing
c++ code be sufficient, as I know the math to do this and have done this in
the program languages mentioned.
You could always use a photo of a comet. and call it from the ssystem.ini
comets use the tex_map = nomap.png
just call tex_map=my_comet.png or some such thing
make sure the texture is sized correctly.
I think this would be a great feature, I'm not the "best" openGL programmer
but I will go to the ends of the earth to do this.
Ya, like your awesome Tonight's Best...?
Comet rendering failed.
Made 1024^2 png with a grey blurred comet-like streak on transparent
background called lovejoy.png. Made size 10 million km in the hope that it
will enlarge enough to be 20 degrees on the sky. Instead I got a 10 million km
size ball about 20 degrees across in the sky!
Relevant lines in ssytem.ini
radius = 10000000
tex_map = lovejoy.png
The "tex_map" and "radius" parameters are relevant only to the spheroid model
displayed for every Solar System object when you zoom in on it.
Adding a comet texture may work with the "tex_halo" parameter - it controls
which texture is used when the body is displayed as a star-like object. Of
course, it won't align automatically the tail and the Sun. :)
Ah well, that didn't work either. Made a png 1024^2 with comet image and
assigned it to tex_halo" and it looked just like any other star halo. Guess
we've run out of options. It's now over to the the programmers.
I can't figure out how to add comets at all in my program. I found this page
but it's outdated: http://www.stellarium.org/wiki/index.php/Solar_System_Obje
I want to be able to see where some of the brighter comets will be in the
night sky. Is there a page I missed about how to add them?
Ok I figured it out after some googling.