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View Full Version : Bad Astronomy on stellarium? Some help here?



man on the moon
2007-Dec-16, 11:56 AM
I'll likely be accused of nitpicking, but I opened stellarium tonight and noticed the opening splash screen. A Moon just shy of full is hovering just over the horizon with a sunrise/sunset nearby. Granted it's an artistic picture, but...

Any thoughts? Or am I missing something here?

tdvance
2007-Dec-16, 04:02 PM
No worse than your avatar showing the moon aligned with Great Britain when its orbit never goes that high a latitude :)

Veeger
2007-Dec-16, 05:35 PM
Stellarium is a great product and fun to use, but I have seen it misused by some as well. For example, some have tried to use it to prove various points about stellar and planetary alignments with man-made structures (e.g. Stone Henge or the Pyramids at Giza) during different epochs. This is "bad astronomy" since Stellarium does take some algorithmic shortcuts in order to enhance its performance. For example, its precession calculation simply multiplies the average rate per year times the number of years from J2000, if I recall correctly. Good for a few decades +/- J2000 but unreliable for precision archaeo-astronomy.

-Veeger

man on the moon
2007-Dec-17, 03:56 AM
No worse than your avatar showing the moon aligned with Great Britain when its orbit never goes that high a latitude :)

Guilty as charged!

Not trying to down stellarium, it's been very useful on many occasions. I just happened to notice that small nitpick the other night as I opened. Last night? Some night. Every nights a good night, right?

Thanks for the note veeger, good to know in case I ever need to be an ancient Egyptian! archeology is not my strong point, but I'll keep it in mind because I will inevitably meet someone, someday, who wants to use it for that.

laurele
2007-Dec-20, 09:07 PM
After downloading Stellarium, I asked it to find Eris and got a message saying it did not recognize that object.

Veeger
2007-Dec-20, 10:23 PM
No problem, you should be able to add Eris yourself by editing the ssytem.ini file.
See the documentation for the program or check out the User's guide section of their wiki on the web.

http://www.stellarium.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

-Veeger