WorldWide Telescope

WorldWide Telescope

Postby steve-fung » Mon Apr 06, 2015 2:19 am

Microsoft WorldWide Telescope (WWT) is a powerful free astronomical visualization software created by Microsoft Research and Johns Hopkins University, initially released in 2008, now version 5.1 Gold as of April 2015. It has five main visualization modes - Sky, Earth, Planets, Panoramas, and Solar System.

Sky mode provides planetarium views of the sky from any Earth location and time with spectral imagery ranging from radio to gamma from the Hubble, Spitzer, Chandra, COBE, WMAP, ROSAT, IRAS, GALEX telescopes.

My favorite mode is the Solar System, which maps the Sun, planets, their moons, minor planets, and asteroids - positioned with their correct scale and phase. You can move forward and backward in time to view their positions, and you can select arbitrary viewing locations to watch an eclipse, occultation, and alignment. You can also zoom away from the Solar System to view the Milky Way and even further to view galaxy filaments as determined from the Sloan Digital Sky Survey.

Microsoft has made it open source as of March 2015. It's a great education tool for both self-learning and presentation. You can download or create your own guided tours. You can also use WWT to control your telescope via ASCOM standard.

Home Page:


User Guide:

System Requirements:

    Windows 7 or Windows 8 (older versions of Windows are not supported)
    Discrete graphics card with 512 MB VRAM, DirectX 10 or DirectX 11 compatibility, high-end GTX 480 class or better, and 1 GB VRAM recommended
    Microsoft .NET Framework 3.5
    Microsoft .NET Framework 4.0

I give it two thumbs up, highly recommended!

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Re: WorldWide Telescope

Postby clayton-bownds » Mon Apr 06, 2015 11:56 am

Hands down, the best link I've seen in a long time. Thanks!

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