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General Astronomy >> General Observing and Astronomy

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Danzup77
professor emeritus


Reged: 09/12/11

where to get RA/DEC locations? new
      #5559866 - 12/07/12 07:41 PM

Is there a site or program where I can search for a given object and get RA/DAC? I dont use Stellarium because even in my 1 year old comp all it does is strobe so I dont even bother. What about other ipad/iphone apps? Are coordinates found on most of those accurate enough to point a scope at?

Thanks All


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Man in a Tub
Postmaster
*****

Reged: 10/28/08

Loc: Fogpatch, CA
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Danzup77]
      #5559888 - 12/07/12 08:01 PM

For starters:

Simbad:

http://simbad.u-strasbg.fr/simbad/


NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database:

http://ned.ipac.caltech.edu/forms/byname.html

There are more but these two are well-known. I use Simbad frequently.

I can't help with ipad/iphone apps.


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Danzup77
professor emeritus


Reged: 09/12/11

Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Man in a Tub]
      #5559923 - 12/07/12 08:28 PM

Thanks Todd I will browse through these tonight. I know the app "Pocket Universe" has a search tab and when it comes up it shows RA/DEC etc but not sure how spot on it is.

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sg6
professor emeritus


Reged: 02/14/10

Loc: Norfolk, UK.
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Danzup77]
      #5560594 - 12/08/12 09:54 AM

Just about any astronomy reference book.

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Dennis_S253
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/22/11

Loc: West Central Florida
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: sg6]
      #5560618 - 12/08/12 10:13 AM

Dan, you could just Google the object your looking for. It usually tells you about the object and gives you RA/DEC. It would be nice to know why you are having troubles with Stellarium though. Just a question, what refresh rate do you run on the monitor?

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Danzup77
professor emeritus


Reged: 09/12/11

Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Dennis_S253]
      #5561138 - 12/08/12 04:18 PM

SG6 an astronomy refrence book will have objects such as asteroids that move?

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Danzup77
professor emeritus


Reged: 09/12/11

Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Danzup77]
      #5561145 - 12/08/12 04:22 PM

Haha Dennis I would love to know this as well. If you would be willing to walk me through some steps Id like very much to get it figured out. OK I found the monitor refresh rate bumped it up to 75 which is the MAX and Stellarium still flickers. hmmm

Edited by Danzup77 (12/08/12 04:31 PM)


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Starman1
Vendor (EyepiecesEtc.com)
*****

Reged: 06/24/03

Loc: Los Angeles
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Danzup77]
      #5561301 - 12/08/12 06:24 PM

Quote:

Is there a site or program where I can search for a given object and get RA/DAC? I don't use Stellarium because even in my 1 year old comp all it does is strobe so I don't even bother. What about other ipad/iphone apps? Are coordinates found on most of those accurate enough to point a scope at?

Thanks All



Phones, tablets, and programs on them are generally NOT accurate enough to use those as pointing devices. IF the phone or tablet or laptop is linked to and controlling the telescope, THEN astronomy programs on board would be accurate enough to control the pointing of the scope.
However, if it's a computerized scope, which is what's necessary to attach an electronic device in order to control the scope, it has a hand controller that will find every object, so attaching a computer is merely complicating what was simple.
Additionally, the use of a phone, tablet, or laptop in the field will destroy your night vision and prevent you from seeing some of the objects you are trying to find. If you cover the screens and reduce the brightness significantly, they can be used to control the scope, but again you're duplicating the function of the hand controller with the scope.
And if the telescope is not computerized, the accuracy of finding objects using a phone or tablet is usually, at best, about +/- 3 degrees, which isn't accurate enough to find anything.
I recommend a basic star atlas and a red LED flashlight for the field. The Pocket Sky Atlas or the Tirion Sky Atlas 2000.0
are both excellent for the field. You can use the internet for information about the objects before you go out so you have a small list of objects to look for.
You can also download my list of the 500 Best DSOs, all viewed with my 5" scope:
HERE
It's attached to the post.
Information on the list:
Object Constellation
Object Type
Object ID
Object Common name
RA
DEC
Total Magnitude
Surface Brightness
Max Size
Min Size
Number of stars
Brightest star magnitude
Class of object
Distance in LY


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Mxplx2
sage


Reged: 09/12/12

Loc: NE PA USA
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Danzup77]
      #5561388 - 12/08/12 07:29 PM

This should be helpful.

http://www.universetoday.com/51634/universe-today-guide-to-the-messier-objects/


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Dennis_S253
Pooh-Bah


Reged: 11/22/11

Loc: West Central Florida
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Mxplx2]
      #5561403 - 12/08/12 07:45 PM

Hey Don, thanks for the list. I'll check that out later.
Dan, there's another program you might be interested in...
Tonights sky
Also, I'll send you a PM tomorrow and well talk about Stellarium. Clear skies...


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LivingNDixie
TSP Chowhound
*****

Reged: 04/23/03

Loc: Trussville, AL
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Danzup77]
      #5562449 - 12/09/12 01:17 PM

Quote:

SG6 an astronomy refrence book will have objects such as asteroids that move?




I have used Heavens-Above to track the brighter ones. It has been accurate enough for me to track Vesta and Pallas.


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Astrodj
professor emeritus
*****

Reged: 08/24/11

Loc: Missouri
Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? [Re: Danzup77]
      #5562544 - 12/09/12 02:17 PM

HNSKY planetarium software (free) plots known asteroid orbits. Place the cursor on the charted asteroid and you have RA/DEC, mag, etc.

The learning curve for this software isn't steep at all, and it is decent for printing your own charts as well. Here is a link to the download:

http://www.hnsky.org/software.htm


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Danzup77
professor emeritus


Reged: 09/12/11

Re: where to get RA/DEC locations? new [Re: Astrodj]
      #5564844 - 12/10/12 08:28 PM

HNSKY and Tonights Sky are now on my list of KEEPER programs lol, Thanks guys. Preston I think thats a great place to start as I dont intend to hunt anything out of my league yet. Thats what I use to find ISS flyovers and iridium flares. Thanks for that list Don, gonna have to do some digging through it.....geesh ask and you shall recieve. Thanks for the homework all.

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