Stellarium renders 3D photo-realistic skies in real time with OpenGL. It displays stars, constellations, planets, nebulae and others things like ground, landscape, atmosphere, etc.
- Realistic simulation of the sky, sunrise and sunset
- Default catalogue of over 600,000 stars
- Downloadable additional catalogues for up to 210 million stars
- Catalog data for all New General Catalogue (NGC) objects
- Images of almost all Messier objects and the Milky Way
- Artistic illustrations for all 88 modern constellations
- More than a dozen different cultures with their constellations
- Solar and lunar eclipse simulation
- Photorealistic landscapes (more are available on the website)
- Scripting support with ECMAScript (a few demo scripts are included)
- Extendable with plug-ins: 21 plug-ins installed by default, including:
- artificial satellites plug-in (updated from an on-line TLE database)
- ocular simulation plug-in (shows how objects look like in a given ocular)
- Solar System editor plug-in (imports comet and asteroid data from the MPC)
- telescope control plug-in (Meade LX200 and Celestron NexStar compatible)
- Remote control via web interface plug-in
- 3D landscapes plug-in
Incredible software with one serious drawback: It needs text entry, search, map zoom, etc. on specifying viewing locations. It takes way too long to scroll down to "United States of America", for example. The location map is almost uselessly small and needs zoom/select capability. I apologize if these functions are already user-selectable and I haven't learned how to change them, but it's not for lack of looking through the Settings options; I just don't see it yet.
Très beau programme.
Nice program. I will use it.