By Rick Fensch
Available landscapes for download.
Download the latest version of Stellarium here. It’s free!
HCAS Lower Lot 49MB
HCAS Middle Lot 50MB
HCAS Upper Lot 49 MB
HCAS Rear Lot 54MB
HCAS Dome (coming soon)
Astronomy Hill at Broad Creek 13 MB
Abingdon Dog Park 21MB
Cherry Springs 25 MB
Sandy Hook Field (coming soon)
Are you already using Stellarium for planning your observing or imaging session? If so, you are going to like this. If you do not currently use Stellarium, I think this option may push you to begin using it! Stellarium allows you to install and use custom landscapes. The benefit of using a custom landscape is to accurately plan when you will be able to see different objects during your observing or imaging session. No longer will you have to guess if M13 will be behind trees trees at 10 PM. With the custom landscape, you will be able to see the precise time M13 will rise over your trees, any time of the year. Below are the instructions for installing a custom landscape in Stellarium.
First, download the landscape you would like to use. The file you download will be in a zip format. This is the preferred format that Stellarium will use. Now open Stellarium and click on the Sky and Viewing Options button. Then click on the Landscape tab at the top. You will then see a large button at the bottom of the Landscape settings that says “Add/remove landscapes…” Go ahead and click that.
You will then see the Add/Remove Landscape window that has another large button that says “Install a new landscape from a ZIP archive…” Click that and navigate to the zip file you downloaded.
Navigate to the zip file you downloaded earlier and select it.
The landscape will install and you will then receive a Success message.
Your new landscape is now visible in the “Add/Remove Landscape” window.
You can now repeat this process to install additional landscapes. Once all landscapes have been installed, you may select between each one from the Landscape tab in the Sky and Viewing Options window.
That was easy! Now you can better plan your observing and imaging sessions from the HCAS parking lot. ENJOY!