Virtual Planetarium showing stars, the planets, the sun and the moon.
Updated 25 Jul 2007

No License

Virtual Planetarium showing approx. 1000 stars, the planets, the sun and the moon, bright deep sky objects, constellations and an object track

The programm system will run under MATLAB Version 5.x, 6.x and 7.x

Extract all files into one directory.

Call skyplot in the MATLAB Command Window.

Enter your position, date and time. Click Panorama, view East, South, West, North or Zenith; enable or disable the option for showing the names of the constellations before. Click Pick to get information about a star, a deep sky object, a planet, the sun or the moon.

Note for time input:
Either you enter the time of your time zone and the difference to UT or you enter UT and set the difference to UT equal zero. The year 0 is accepted, so with years B.C. there might be an offset of one year to other software with a different definition. Be
aware of daylight saving time!

Most of the stars have been collected from the Fundamental Katalog 5; some stars missing in the FK5 have been extracted from the PPM Catalogue. Most of the stars are of magnitude 4 and brigther; only few less brighter stars were added to complete famous constellations; bright deep sky objects are mainly from the Messier Catalogue.

The star data include the proper motion of each star. So you can see that the constellations will look different in some 1000 years.
The constellation data contain the 56 most famous of the 88 constellations.

Most of the algorithms are taken from the Book
Montenbruck/Pfleger: Astronomy on the Personal Computer, Springer, 2000; the algorithms have been converted from PASCAL to MATLAB on my own. The computation of the positions of the sun, the moon and the planets is based on series expansions modelling perturbation and precession. I have created the Virtual Planetarium PlotSky as a collection of different program components for visualizing the numeric astronomical computations.

Cite As

Markus Penzkofer (2024). Skyplot1001 (, MATLAB Central File Exchange. Retrieved .

MATLAB Release Compatibility
Created with R10
Compatible with any release
Platform Compatibility
Windows macOS Linux

Community Treasure Hunt

Find the treasures in MATLAB Central and discover how the community can help you!

Start Hunting!
Version Published Release Notes

Changes in the description