A better Milky Way texture.

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Anonymous
2014-05-21
2016-04-08
  • Anonymous - 2014-05-21

    I personally use Stellarium for planning astrophotography shoots and workshops. One of the things that I'm not a huge fan of is the resolution of the Milky Way texture. The original texture is 512px*512px in size. It was made from Nick Risinger's Photopic Sky Survey image here: http://apod.nasa.gov/apod/ap110520.html and http://skysurvey.org/

    Original Stellarium

    The image shared on the APOD link above is 3000 pixels wide so I figured I would try using it to make a better texture and replaced it under Stellarium's program files (Mac: Stellarium/Contents/Resources/textures/milkyway.png)

    Upgraded Stellarium

    The result is a much more detailed Milky Way view (when the Milky Way Brightness option is turned up. Here it is at 6.0) that's particularly great for previewing the "look" of a wide-field astrophoto. I think that a higher resolution image should come in future versions of Stellarium.

    You can find the new 3000px texture for download here:
    milkyway.png (3000px x 3000px)

    To install it, just replace the original milkyway.png under Stellarium's program files (...textures/milkyway.png)

    I hope some of you like this.

    Ian Norman
    Lonely Speck

    Credit to Nick Risinger's Photopic Sky Survey image from which this image is based. CC-BY-NC

     
    • Anonymous - 2014-07-04

      Well I'm new at this. I have tried to find the file structure you show where the old milky way file is but I can't seem to locate it. "replaced it under Stellarium's program files (Mac: Stellarium/Contents/Resources/textures/milkyway.png)"

       
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      Anonymous - 2015-07-23

      This image would be nice, but it does not work with the latest version of Stellarium. The file is not formatted similar to the original (milkyway.png) file that came with the program and therefore does not work correctly. It will show you an Australian night sky in the Northern Hemisphere. I would NOT install.

       
  • TuneRaider

    TuneRaider - 2014-07-04

    Would a FINDER search for milkyway.png show the structure?

     
    • Anonymous - 2014-07-04

      I tried that but nothing. I'm using Mavericks if that helps.

       
  • TuneRaider

    TuneRaider - 2014-07-05

    I'm a Windows guy. My Mac usage was only a couple times with a friends, mainly just on line.
    Does anything in Stellarium's Last Run Log show a Mac's file structure?
    Once you get it figured out i would keep a copy of the old file as a backup until you know the new image works.

     
    Last edit: TuneRaider 2014-07-05
  • Anonymous - 2014-07-07

    I'm a Windows 7 user. Just rename the original milkyway PNG file with another name. Then copy the new file renamed milkyway just like the original file in the stellarium texture folder by using the Windows explorer.

    Looks great!

     
  • TuneRaider

    TuneRaider - 2014-07-07

    Unless i'm cunfused, and i easily am, he's trying to do exactly that on a Mac, not Windows.

     
  • Anonymous - 2014-07-08

    That's absolutely correct. Using what the original poster said here

    (Mac: Stellarium/Contents/Resources/textures/milkyway.png)

     
  • Valerio Capello

    Valerio Capello - 2014-07-21

    The big problem with this texture is that is released under CC-BY-NC 2.0 license, which means images generated with it are no longer free, and they can't -- for example -- be used on Wikipedia or published in a commercial book.

     
    • Alexander Wolf

      Alexander Wolf - 2014-07-21

      2014-07-22 1:43 GMT+07:00 Valerio Capello elfqrin@users.sf.net:

      The big problem with this texture is that is released under CC-BY-NC 2.0
      license, which means images generated with it are no longer free, and they
      can't -- for example -- be used on Wikipedia or published in a commercial
      book.

      Yes, this texture is for home usage only. Maybe in educational tasks in the
      class.

      --
      With best regards, Alexander

       
  • Anonymous - 2015-03-19

    I have replaced the file in windows 7, but does not work. The latest version of Stellarium seems to use the file milkyway_2048.png

    What I can do?

     
    • Anonymous - 2015-03-19

      You can replace it but since the new Milky Way is oriented from the celestial pole and not the Galatical poles, you need to edit the file in order to get the Milky Way to render properly. What I don't understand is why the old Milky Way file is still in the folder. Is it used somewhere?

       
      • Anonymous - 2015-06-09

        Edit in what way? How do i get the wilky way oriented properly?

         
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          Anonymous - 2016-01-18

          That is the question I have also. I have tried rotating the image but that only blurs the textures. Does not seem to work with latest version. The original texture still OK though, oh well.

           
          • gammaburst

            gammaburst - 2016-01-18

            Here's a little MATLAB code I wrote that does the job. It first creates a file containing a transform function, then applies it to the image, then writes the image into Stellarium's texture folder. Beware it overwrites Stellarium's current milky way image.

            % Convert Milky Way image from galactic coords to J2000 equatorial coords for Stellarium 0.13
            clear all;
            A = imread('milkyway-desired.png');  % milky way stretches horizontally across image, centered on galactic core, magellanic clouds in upper-right quadrant
            tempfile = 'temp.m';
            fout = fopen(tempfile, 'w');
              fprintf(fout,'function U = wedge_rev(X,t);\n');
              fprintf(fout,'[x,y,z] = sph2cart(X(:,1), X(:,2), 1);  %% azimuth elevation range to xyz\n');
              fprintf(fout,'%% stellarium needs equatorial image, so build galactic-to-equatorial rotation matrix using J2000 coords from http://dictionary.sensagent.com/Galactic%%20latitude/en-en/\n');
              fprintf(fout,'r =     rotz(180-192.859508);  %% NGP RA,      positive right-shifts output image\n');
              fprintf(fout,'r = r * rotx(90-27.128336);    %% NGP Dec,     positive increases tilt of galactic plane\n');
              fprintf(fout,'r = r * rotz(122.932-90);      %% Zero of Lon, positive right-shifts galaxy along its plane\n');
              fprintf(fout,'m = [x y z] * r;    %% apply rotation\n');
              fprintf(fout,'[az,el,r] = cart2sph(m(:,1),m(:,2),-m(:,3));\n');
              fprintf(fout,'U = [az el];\n');
            fclose(fout);
            T = maketform('custom', 2, 2, [], @temp, []);
            B = imtransform(A,T,makeresampler('cubic','circular'), 'UData',[-pi pi],'VData',[-pi/2 pi/2], 'XData',[-pi pi],'YData',[-pi/2 pi/2], 'Size',[2048 4096]);  % circular avoids black line at boundary, output azimuth elevation, input azimuth elevation, output height width
            delete(tempfile);
            imwrite(B,'C:\Stellarium\textures\milkyway.png');  % milky way begins at left-center, curves up high, then curves down low with galactic core somewhat below image center, then curves up to right-center, large magellanic cloud near lower-left corner
            
             
            Last edit: gammaburst 2016-01-18
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              Anonymous - 2016-04-08

              Please, share that final result of Milky Way texture. Your MATLAB code (BTW. great job) doesn't work in my GNU Octave. Thank you.
              HOOT

               


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