stellarium_20070727.jpg

Hackszine reader ozastro made a request for a southern hemisphere night sky guide. Instead of a specific southern sky guide, here are a couple of really nice open source astronomy packages that you can download. One will allow you to view the night sky from any point on Earth, and the other will let you change your perspective to any point in the universe.

Stellarium, is a planetarium package that will let you view the sky from any time or position on earth. Pictured above is the southern sky (with constellations outlines), as seen from Perth.

Celestia is a little like jumping in a virtual space ship which allows you view realistic models of the solar planets as well as travel throughout the universe. Curious what the universe looks like from Polaris? Want to to view Io up close and personal? Check it out. It’s worth the download.

Both packages are available as binary downloads for OS X, Linux, and Windows.

Downloads:
Stellarium – Link
Celestia – Link