Is there a "God's eye view" feature that would permit one to draw back from their location on the earth and see the position and paths of the celestial objects that are only seen in projection when viewed from earth's surface? I want to be able to pull back from the earth, observe my portion of the night sky from a point in outer space (with the star pattern I see projected onto it), and understand how the location and tracks of the celestial objects produce this pattern. I am an astronomy novice and would find this perspective very helpful in understanding how the star pattern seen in Stellarium is formed. It would also allow me to gain a better appreciation of the relative distances of the objects seen in the night sky.
I understand if what I am asking for is outside the scope of what Stellarium is intended to accomplish (and, I might add, does very, very well). If there is another program that does the same thing I would appreciate a link.
With warmest appreciation for the efforts of those involved in creating Stellarium,
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I guess you want Celestia :)
Thank you very much for this response. I have downloaded Celestia and have started to investigate this program.
You could go to Solar System Observatory with the Search function. Then you click on Ctrl-G to go there and you search again for the Earth, or the Sun. The Observatory is situated somewhere ( I don't remember exactly ) in space.
This was a request made many years ago but it was not practical to add it as a direct feature in Stellarium. A compromise was added by making and an entry for the ssystem.ini file SSO "Solar_System_Observer".
name=Solar System Observer
color=0., 0., 0.
You can change the viewing position by experimenting with the values.
Selecting this object in the search window will select it and your viewing position can be moved to this site by pressing "Ctrl G" in Windows or command G in MacBook Pro
Then select Sun to zoom the view to a position where the solar system is visible
Thank you for this response. I have a MacBook Pro and it took me a while (and an upgrade to the latest version of Stellarium) to figure out that I need to use Command-G instead of Control-G to reposition my point of view.
Sorry for the missing Macbook command. I don't know much about the Mac hot keys.
I edited my earlier post to reflect the different hot key.
It's a difference in terminology, not radically different key bindings. The "Control" key on Windows/Linux is called "Command" on Macs - the "Control" key on Macs does other things.
Another way to go to the Solar System Observer virtual object is to select it from the "Planet" menu in the Location window.
"Universe Sandbox" has a free and a premium version. universesandbox.com or http://store.steampowered.com/app/72200/ However, it needs Windows 7