Sunday, May 24, 2009

Visit EXOSOLAR.NET--An Interactive Flash Starchart


This is by far one of the neatest things I've found online in a long time.

EXOSOLAR.NET is a professionally done, interactive animated starchart showing the stellar neighborhood around our solar system. You can zoom in and out, rotate the view, toggle close-ups of known star systems with exoplanets or binaries, and more! An invaluable resource for anyone into astronomy, space exploration, or science fiction.

When I was young and imagined zooming around interstellar space in a starship, this is the kind of navigational aid I imagined starpilots would reference. Okay, it might not be quite as detailed as all that (its has excellent data on stars within about 30 light years, but it thins out significantly after that--though you can find the occasional far-off straggler on the charts like Betelgeuse at 427 ly and Deneb at 1600 ly) but it was still enough to get my sense of wonder going. Check t out.

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