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You don’t have to spend too much effort to know the names of the constellations, all you have to do is to have a passion for astronomy and guess what, and bit by bit you’ll start appreciating your stargazing with all its mysteries, like an astronaut. This is because of Stellarium, a new free software that is dedicated to taking you closer to space through your tech-gadget.

The software is user-friendly and there is no need for prior knowledge of such technology, in fact, you don’t need to bother much with the settings menu. After downloading all you need is just a few steps of set-up and off you go.

Immediately after downloading you need to enter your location and set the time zones. Don’t bother to set the time, the software will automatically do it using your computer’s time, so adjust your computer if it’s not reading the correct time. It’s optional to set the location, but it’s preferable so that you are able to capture what’s of your interest in the space around you. Select the location and your city by clicking the menu available on the side panel, the menu can also be accessed by pressing F6.

At this point, you are now set for the main thing. There’s a menu on the bottom right panel where you can adjust the time-optional also. Select what you want to be displayed using that menu; you can choose a display of the planets, stars, star clusters, galaxies, nebulae’s or choose to have all of them displayed at once.

Furthermore, you can choose this software to get vital details about constellations; for instance, you can choose to display constellation contours which can help you to identify constellations appearing in the sky outside. Images of constellations and their names can also be searched. There’s a search option that can be activated by pressing F3 and you can use it to look for any object of your choice.

If you want to bring the heavenly objects closer to you, all you need to do is to zoom in, though the quality of the image will be compromised.

These are the basic functions which are good for a beginner, but on a more advanced level, you can:

Navigate your telescope, adjusting the light levels to suit you best, depending on the surroundings.
Add features for your telescope and lenses for a detailed stargazing night out – very useful indeed if you want to do astrophotography and can be useful to check on lenses to determine whether you need a particular lens strength for your telescope.
Replace the background picture with your choice.
Download catalogs of solar system objects and stars from the internet.

With Stellarium, you can do a lot whether an amateur astronomer or an experienced stargazer and therefore it’s a worthy software to download. Do you think we can have software anytime soon that can help capture fast radio bursts from the comfort of our home? With the advancement in technology, anything is possible and hopefully, it’s never too early to start thinking in that direction.

Follow this link if you want to download Stellarium.

From Isaac Newton to Nicolas Copernicus to Galileo, I have tried to feed my love for the skies by reading the life stories of this great men and women. But the more I opened pages the more I found I wanted to know more – and more I read, libraries I visited, journals, the internet and wherever until I came to the end of the road.

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