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ExploreStars connects you and your Explore Scientific PMC-Eight equipped telescope to the universe with any Windows® device. This platform is designed to simplify your stargazing experience through it's extremely simple and intuitive interface while improving your skills as an astronomer. ExploreStars has the same basic functions found in other GOTO systems, with an important exception, the app and the command language driving the PMC-Eight is open source - meaning anyone can modify our software or create their own software through our Software Developers Kit (SDK) - and you can download your modified software onto our electronics. Create a Messier challenge. Create a selectable list of objects you want to photograph and program that information into the software. Share it with the community of astronomers that are using this software. We plan to offer a prize with a contest periodically for the best written software code. For stellar objects, we are using the Hipparcos/Tycho II database. Where possible, we have cross-referenced the Bayer, Flamstead, SAO, HD/Harvard, DM, BD/CD/CPD, and GSC catalogs. The user can search by any of these designations to find a given star. When the system first starts, it loads the 2,000+ stars of magnitude 5.5 and brighter. The user can load the additional 72,000+ star catalog as needed. For non-stellar objects, we use the RNGC/IC catalog. The system is designed so the user can update the provided catalogs and create your own catalog using tables and scripts in Microsoft Access. Also, each object has a unique ID number, so users can report errors and omissions. To start using ExploreStars, download the free app and download the celestial data set that contains the astronomical catalogs, reference images, and reference text. This dataset can be found at Simply by unzipping the ExploreStars folder containing the expanded celestial data set into your Pictures directory, you will expand the native database from a thousand objects to over seventy thousand objects. Upon startup of the ExploreStars app, a message that says “Please Wait” is displayed as it links wirelessly to the PMC-Eight, this can take several a few seconds. After it connects, the home screen with a touch sensitive telescope control keypad is on the right, pointing information is displayed in the center, and a touch sensitive finger-drag controller for slewing the telescope in any direction is on the left, that you move your finger across to slew the telescope. You are now ready to start the alignment process and explore the stars. The source code for ExploreStars is also available for programmers on the OpenGOTO Community to serve as a demonstration platform for those who wish to create their own Astronomy GOTO or Motion Control software for the Explore Scientific PMC-Eight™. The PMC-Eight is a powerful wireless 8 CPU micro-controller designed for precision motion control for telescope mounts available through Explore Scientific.


Additional information

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Copyright 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 Explore Scientific USA

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Release date


Approximate size

5.04 MB

Age rating

For ages 3 and up

This app can

Use your location
Access your Internet connection
Access your Internet connection and act as a server.
Access your home or work networks
Use your pictures library


Get this app while signed in to your Microsoft account and install on up to ten Windows 10 devices.

Language supported

English (United States)

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