It shows a realistic sky in 3D, just like what you see with the naked eye, binoculars or a telescope. It is being used in planetarium projectors. Just set your coordinates and go.

Sky

  • default catalogue of over 600,000 stars
  • extra catalogues with more than 210 million stars
  • asterisms and illustrations of the constellations
  • constellations for twelve different cultures
  • images of nebulae (full Messier catalogue)
  • realistic Milky Way
  • very realistic atmosphere, sunrise and sunset
  • the planets and their satellites

Interface

  • a powerful zoom
  • time control
  • multilingual interface
  • fisheye projection for planetarium domes
  • spheric mirror projection for your own low-cost dome
  • all new graphical interface and extensive keyboard control
  • telescope control

Visualisation

  • equatorial and azimuthal grids
  • star twinkling
  • shooting stars
  • eclipse simulation
  • supernovae simulation
  • skinnable landscapes, now with spheric panorama projection

Customizability

  • plugin system adding artifical satellites, ocular simulation, telescope configuration and more
  • ability to add new solar system objects from online resources...
  • add your own deep sky objects, landscapes, constellation images, scripts...

What's New:

The major changes of this version:

  • We have finally completed our work on accurate planet axes, including Lunar libration
  • Visualisation of Earth shadow for Lunar eclipses
  • Better texture for the Lunar surface
  • Added the latest algorithms for planet magnitudes
  • Enhanced Calendars plugin
  • Replaced “arabic” by more accurate “al-Sufi” skyculture
  • Planets are now scalable and Solar glare switchable for didactic applications
  • We have also published a scientific paper about the application of Stellarium in cultural astronomy: https://doi.org/10.1558/jsa.17822

Thank you very much to community for bug reports, feature requests and contributions!

Full list of changes:

  • Added accurate planet axis orientation and rotation (GH: #502, #151):
  • Added lunar libration (GH: #877)
  • Added lines for the Invariable Plane and Projected Solar Equator (GH: #358)
  • Added solar altitude to planetary feature nomenclature
  • Added describe planetary coordinates and changes in the nomenclature display into Stellarium User Guide
  • Added new language: Spanish (Latin America)
  • Added ability to scaling of Sun and planets (GH: #1263)
  • Added new magnitude algorithms for planets from Mallama&Hilton 2018 (GH: #574)
  • Added Earth shadow circles for topocentric observer (GH: #430)
  • Added new 4k texture for the Moon (required re-balancing planet shader brightness)
  • Added lower limit for aFOV parameter of ocular in the GUI to avoid input wrong data (GH: #1487)
  • Added visibility of an antisolar point for other planets (GH: #1481)
  • Added ability to get all designations of DSO in scripts (GH: #1477)
  • Added ability to show hourly motion in decimal degrees (GH: #1478)
  • Added more cardinal points (GH: #1522, #1529)
  • Added ability to switching off drawing of Solar glare (GH: #1538)
  • Added a new sky culture based on Al-Sufi “Book of Fixed Stars” written ~ 964 AD (GH: #1548)
  • Added Old Hindu calendars
  • Added Islamic (algorithmic) and Hebrew calendar.
  • Added French Revolution calendar (arithmetic version)
  • Added Persian (arithmetic) calendar
  • Added button to set standard atmosphere
  • Added ability to translation/transliteration of Roman (latin) terms (GH: #1511)
  • Added ability to use UTC time when navigational stars are displayed (GH: #1416)
  • Added acknowledgment section into Help/About window (GH: #1568)
  • Added cosmetic fix for radio communication data: no need extra precision to show data in Satellites plugin
  • Fixed compatibility of ToneReproducer shader with GLES (GH: #1549, #1550)
  • Fixed retranslation of calendars (GH: #1545)
  • Fixed vertical position of calendar info panel
  • Fixed height-dependent twinkle for star-like objects (GH: #1542)
  • Fixed capturing a screenshots under macOS High Sierra and later (GH: #102)
  • Fixed documentation for API
  • Fixed display the extincted magnitudes for all objects
  • Fixed reading textures (GH: #1547)
  • Fixed alignment of an intercardinal direction markers (GH: #1552)
  • Fixed work of multisampling mode when in Spout isn’t used (GH: #1537)
  • Fixed visualization zodiacal light at low Bortle values (GH: #1489, #1510)
  • Fixed the drawing a degrees on compass on HiDPI devices
  • Fixed search short phrases (GH: #1528)
  • Fixed orientation of Jupiter, Uranus and Venus (GH: #357)
  • Fixed inexact rotation of Moon (GH: #347)
  • Fixed wrong rendering of Jupiter (GH: #1261)
  • Fixed incorrect moon terminator (GH: #973)
  • Fixed a skybox.ssc script (GH: #1461)
  • Fixed crash when trails are enabled (GH: #1471)
  • Fixed crash when choosing Zero Horizon landscape (GH: #1466)
  • Fixed displaying labels of coordinate grids on HiDPI devices (GH: #1445)
  • Fixed a labeling hour angles (GH: #1457)
  • Fixed API docs
  • Fixed styles of QMessageBox and QColorDialog (GH: #1451)
  • Fixed WUI of Remote Control plugin
  • Fixed HiDPI issue for Observability plugin
  • Fixed the placement of cardinal marks when compass mark is enabled on the HiDPI devices
  • Fixed placement of the value of equation of time for HiDPI devices
  • Fixed crash at exit (GH: #1479)
  • Fixed work of Spout mode: inhibit multisampling when in Spout mode (GH: #1507)
  • Fixed DOI link for “Calendrical Calculations” (GH: #1562, #1566)
  • Fixed missing strings for translation (GH: #1562, #1566)
  • Fixed tooltips and placeholders (GH: #1562, #1566)
  • Fixed comments for translators (GH: #1562, #1566)
  • Fixed updating placement of calendars when visibility of calendars are changed (GH: #1567)
  • Fixed artifacts in the GUI when language is changed
  • Fixed images and typos in Stellarium User Guide
  • Fixed bibliography in Stellarium User Guide
  • Fixed the figure of Virgo constellation (GH: #1570)
  • Fixed stupid typos in satellites.json file
  • Fixed illumination during Lunar eclipse in Scenery 3D plugin (GH: #1506)
  • Fixed behavior “Clear” button in Script Console (GH: #1499)
  • Fixed lunar magnitude: try an accurate Lunar magnitude formula (GH: #1350)
  • Fixed lunar eclipses: redo the eclipse push effect for lunar eclipses
  • Fixed behavior of Bookmarks tool when pressed button “cancel” in import dialog (GH: #1497)
  • Fixed Mesa mode for Windows (GH: #1551)
  • Fixed multisampling on non-Windows systems (GH: #1553)
  • Fixed typos in Al-Sufi skyculture
  • Fixed bug for calculation the leap years: restore leap year rule in our astronomical year counting
  • Updated translations
  • Updated translations of landscapes descriptions
  • Updated translations of 3D sceneries descriptions
  • Updated translations of skycultures descriptions
  • Updated AstroCalc/Phenomena tool (GH: #1520)
  • Updated planetary features data
  • Updated building instructions for Windows (GH: #1444)
  • Updated core: slight restructuring of Planets, Comets, MinorPlanets, SolarSystem loader
  • Updated core: using data from WGCCRE reports 2009, 2015 and Explanatory Supplement to the AA 2013 (with error fixed by the 1992 ed.) for rotation elements
  • Updated core: keeps original Stellarium planet rotation model (undocumented) where new rotation elements are unavailable
  • Updated core: make StelToneReproducer’s xyYToRGB.glsl core function reusable (GH: #1468)
  • Updated code of INDI client to version 1.8.5
  • Updated code for building Stellarium without NLS and Scripting support
  • Updated GUI (GH: #1204)
  • Updated Satellites plugin
  • Updated default satellites database
  • Updated GUI of Navigational stars plugin
  • Updated default pulsars catalog
  • Updated description of supernovae plugin (GH: #500)
  • Updated description of calendars plugin in Stellarium User Guide
  • Removed proper name for NGC 2194 (GH: #1530)
  • Removed Arabic skyculture: Arabic SC was replaced by more accurate “al-Sufi” skyculture