Celestial + Piloting

Sight Planning

Sight Analysis

Sight Reduction

Position Fixes

Cel Nav Utilities

Route Sailings

Current Sailings

Piloting Fixes

Dead Reckoning

Nav Utilities

Calculator Versions

Sight Planning

The sky view function (Sight Planner) graphically displays a radar-like projection of the sky at a specific time and place. The Sight Planner can also compute the best bodies to "shoot" to obtain the best possible fix. Please see Find Sights function

Input are the date, time, and DR position. Hc min and Hc max, as well as the minimum magnitude are also user settings.

The program then searches through the internal almanac for the visible stars and planets, followed by displaying a graphical view of the sky. Note that stars are displayed as black points on the screen, planets are identified by small orange dots, the Sun is a yellow filled circle, and the moon is displayed as a gray filled circle.

Stars are searched in order of brightness. Once the picture is drawn, use the mouse move around the screen. To select a specific body on the screen and obtain further information simply move the mouse pointer over the body.

Mercury is included and you can take sights of it for navigation, although it is not listed in the Nautical Almanac because it is only rarely useful. Nevertheless, StarPilot will nicely warn you when it is there so it won't get confused with another star or planet.

The following example displays the position of the brightest stars, moon, and the planets at 2200 GMT on January 1, 1998 at 12 N, 68 W.

[Plot Sky] displays the star map on the StarPilot's main display. [List Bodies] will list in tabular form information about all the visible bodies. [Best Sights] is only active when using the Find Sights feature of the sight planner discussed in the link above. Enable Twilight is used to plot sky maps at mid twilight times for doing star sights. The "hand" icon is a short cut to the StarPilot settings.