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Meteora
2004-Jul-14, 08:02 AM
Gee... my first "new topic!" :D

Anyway, here's my question:

The "Ask Marilyn" article recently mentioned the concept of constellations changing shape over time. Is there a good animation or other visual description of that effect on-line that anyone knows about? My quick search only turned up text references. My parents were asking about this, and I was trying to explain parallax and distances and times and such, but didn't have a good example to show. It had been so long since I'd looked into this that I didn't even remember for sure what time spans were involved. 8-[

Maksutov
2004-Jul-14, 08:51 AM
Gee... my first "new topic!"

Congrats! And a really good one too!

Here's a post (http://www.badastronomy.com/phpBB/viewtopic.php?p=261482&sid=aa575dcdefb130db46ce4e3 dfcd571be#261482) that contains a link to software that will do a 2-D simulation of star location changes over time.

Enter the suggested coordinates (85 RA and 0 Dec), select a "1000" interval and click on "View" and then "Animate". You'll see the changes in thousand years steps in the area of Orion's "belt".

RA 57 and Dec 23.5 will center the screen on the Pleiades.

Only drawback here is it's an 8 degree square window, so only small asterisms will fit. I'll see if I can find another animation with a larger window.

eburacum45
2004-Jul-14, 10:24 AM
Search around David Nash's interesting site and you will find a number of animations showing alterations in the heavens;

even over the 6000 years of history since the First Kingdom in Egypt most constellations have changed little.
http://www.astronexus.com/3duniv/index.html

Maksutov
2004-Jul-14, 10:43 AM
Search around David Nash's interesting site and you will find a number of animations showing alterations in the heavens;

even over the 6000 years of history since the First Kingdom in Egypt most constellations have changed little.
http://www.astronexus.com/3duniv/index.html

Beautiful website. Thanks, eburacum45! =D>

Nice to see the universe in 3D without having to imagine it. Now to get all those folks that think constellations are actual three dimensional places to visit it and learn. 8)

Wolverine
2004-Jul-14, 10:53 AM
Wow. :o

That sure helps put things in perspective. Thanks!

Meteora
2004-Jul-14, 11:32 AM
:o

:o

Wow. Great! Thanks Maksutov and eburacum45! That's exactly the kind of thing I was looking for. The 3-D charts brought back fond memories of Remote Sensing class back in college. :D Too bad my mom can't use that kind of chart (eye injury from many years ago). :(

ToSeek
2004-Jul-14, 01:11 PM
My version of Starry Night Pro will actually do this. It's a little creepy watching the stars change positions!

Normandy6644
2004-Jul-14, 02:59 PM
There's also a really cool simulation of this in one of the episodes of Cosmos by Carl Sagan.