SkyChart 4.2

SkyChart

SkyChart is an atlas of cosmic objects that allows to get maps of the sky of stars by using various catalogues of stars and nebulas. The program is distributed for free and is a perfect tool for novice astronomers.

SkyChart is like a virtual observatory giving users location diagram of astronomical objects – stars, planet and asteroid clusters – on the map of sky of stars. Along with that, users are not limited by their real location only but are able to move to any place in the world instantly that gives an opportunity to view constellations from the places of other people who are located across Earth.

Apart from obtaining the statistic view, astronomer can also track movements of cosmic objects in real time by managing time intervals and scrolling events forward and backwards. Automatic animation allows to see all movements in space in details without tiresome night walks in search of open areas and clear sky.

To help astronomers, the program has a set of ephemeris that contain information about the visible location of stars, planets of the solar system, comets, asteroids and even artificial satellites. Thus, user can be sure that he will not miss any significant event that occurs once in every decade or even millennium.

Despite of many different elements in the interface of SkyChart, it turns out to be user-friendly from the first minutes of usage. The main area of the window presents the map of the sky of stars. You can move and rotate it by quick access buttons and by mouse. Additional tools are designed in the form of small icons. Besides that, the developers offer night mode of the interface that is ideal in the conditions of zero (or almost zero) lighting. For example, observation in the open countryside.

Pros

  • Free of charge.
  • Night design theme.
  • User-friendly interface.
  • Supports telescopic devices of different producers.
  • Custom catalogues of observed objects.
  • Built-in ephemeris.
  • The sky map is displayed using azimuthal, equatorial, ecliptic and galactic system of coordinates.
  • You can observe constellations of the Northern and Southern Hemispheres.
  • Display of object’s information on mouse click.
  • Animation function with adjustable time period.

Cons

  • Zooming out of the sky map has rather strict limitations, that is why the map doesn’t fit the working area on small screens.

Conclusion

The program works correctly and doesn’t glitch. Switching between display modes of the star map is done almost instantly. At the same time, we didn’t notice any negative impact on the operating system or hardware.

Changes in recent version (change history)

Author: Patrick Chevalley
Updated:
Price: Free
Windows: XP, Vista, 7, 8, 10
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SkyChart

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