TAPIR1 - a web interface for planning astronomical observations (mirror site)

Baby tapir
Baby tapir by Michelle Bender, on Flickr


To go straight to examples, see airmass plots only, or annotated finding charts only. Or go to Github for the code.

Planning observations of targets isn't difficult, but it can be tedious, especially when dealing with many targets, observing sites, and/or observational constraints. To help address this problem, the developer wrote a web interface that allows an observer to easily determine which targets will be visible from a given location on a given date. In the hope that it might be useful to others, the developer is releasing the code for other people to apply to their projects or collaborations.

There is a page for generating airmass plots, and a page for generating annotated finding charts.

All of the code is written in Perl, and has been tested primarily on Linux, and partially on Mac OSX. Both of these platforms come with Perl and the Apache webserver installed by default. To run the code, you'll need to install a number of other Perl packages, as detailed in the README.

For more details, see the README file for the code distribution, or grab the source code from github. (You can use the "Code" button on that page to download a zipped file of the source.)

This code was created by Eric Jensen. This page is maintained by Mittelman Observatory at Middlebury College. These tools are part of the Tapir package (upstream primary site, this mirror site) for planning astronomical observations; the source code is freely available.

The upstream primary site includes a more robust set of tools optimized for planning follow-up observations of periodic targets, especially transiting planets.

1. "TAPIR" could stand for TrAnsit PlannIng and Reconnaissance, but in truth the developer just thought the software needed a name, and the developer likes tapirs. The stripes on the baby tapirs look sort of like light curves...

Code developer: Eric Jensen, ejensen1@swarthmore.edu

Page maintainer: Mittelman Observatory at Middlebury College, observatory@middlebury.edu

Last modified: Sun Mar 21 16:30:00 EST 2021