Historical Supernovae plugin

From Stellarium Wiki
Jump to: navigation, search



The Historical Supernovae plugin provides visualization of some bright historical supernovae from table below.

Supernova Maximum brightness Type Name
Date Apparent magnitude
SN 185A 7 December -6.0 Ia
SN 386A 24 April 1.5 II
SN 1006A 29 April -7.5 I
SN 1054A 3 July -6.0 II
SN 1181A 4 August -2.0 II
SN 1572A 5 November -4.0 I Tycho's Supernova
SN 1604A 8 October -2.0 I Kepler's Supernova
SN 1680A 15 August 6.0 IIb Cassiopeia A
SN 1885A 17 August 5.8 IPec S Andromedae
SN 1895B 5 July 8.0 I
SN 1920A 17 December 11.7 II
SN 1921C 11 December 11.0 I
SN 1937C 21 August 8.5 Ia
SN 1960F 21 April 11.6 Ia
SN 1960R 19 December 12.0 I
SN 1961H 8 May 11.8 Ia
SN 1962M 26 November 11.5 II
SN 1966J 2 December 11.3 I
SN 1968L 12 July 11.9 IIP
SN 1970G 30 July 11.4 IIL
SN 1971I 29 May 11.9 Ia
SN 1972E 8 May 8.4 Ia
SN 1979C 15 April 11.6 IIL
SN 1980K 31 October 11.6 IIL
SN 1981B 9 March 12.0 Ia
SN 1983N 17 July 11.4 Ib
SN 1987A 24 February 2.9 IIPec
SN 1989B 6 February 11.9 Ia
SN 1991T 26 April 11.6 IaPec
SN 1993J 30 March 10.8 IIb
SN 1994D 31 March 11.8 Ia
SN 1998bu 21 May 11.9 Ia
SN 2004dj 31 July 11.3 IIP
SN 2011fe 13 September 10.06 Ia
SN 2013aa 13 February 11.9 Ia

Example (Supernova 1604, also known as Kepler's Supernova, Kepler's Nova or Kepler's Star): sn1604wiki.jpg

Using the Historical Supernovae plugin

  1. Enable the tool by clicking the tool-bar button "Load at startup"
  2. Set date and time (29 April 1006 year for SN 1006A as example)

Section [Supernovae] in config.ini file

You can edit config.ini file by yourself for changes of the settings for the Historical Supernovae plugin - just make it carefully!

ID Type Version Description
Plugin Stellarium
last_update string 0.2.11+ 0.11.4+ Date and time of last update
update_frequency_days int 0.2.11+ 0.11.4+ Frequency of updates, in days
updates_enable bool 0.2.11+ 0.11.4+ Enable updates of historical supernovae catalog from Internet
url string 0.2.11+ 0.11.4+ URL of historical supernovae catalog

Catalog of historical supernovae

You can modify the supernovae.json file manually using a text editor. If you are using Windows, it is strongly recommended to use an advanced text editor such as Notepad++ to avoid problems with end-of-line characters. (It will also color the JSON code and make it easier to read.)

Warning: Before editing your supernovae.json, make a backup copy. Leaving out the smallest detail (such as a comma or forgetting to close a curly bracket) will prevent Stellarium from starting.

The path to the directory which contains supernovae.json is something like:

  • C:\Users\UserName\AppData\Roaming\Stellarium\modules\Supernovae (Windows Vista, Windows 7)
  • C:\Documents and Settings\UserName\Application Data\Stellarium\modules\Supernovae (Windows XP)
  • HomeDirectory/Library/Preferences/Stellarium/modules/Supernovae (Mac OS X)
  • ~/.stellarium/modules/Supernovae (Linux)

(Note that this is a hidden folder, so in order to find it you may need to change your computer's settings to display hidden files and folders.)

Format of catalog

To add a new supernova, open a new line after line 5 and paste the following, note commas and brackets, they are important:

             "Supernova designation":
                   "type": "type of supernova",
                   "maxMagnitude": value of maximal visual magnitude,
                   "peakJD": JD for maximal visual magnitude,
                   "alpha": "Right ascension (J2000)",
                   "delta": "Declination (J2000)",
                   "distance": value of distance between supernova and Earth (in thousand of Light Years),
                   "note": "notes for supernova"

For example, record for SN 1604A:

                   "type": "I",
                   "maxMagnitude": -2,
                   "peakJD": 2307190,
                   "alpha": "17h30m36.00s",
                   "delta": "-21d29m00.0s",
                   "distance": 14,
                   "note": "Kepler's Supernova"

Light curves

In this plugin implemented simple model of light curves for different supernovae. Typical view of light curve for supernova type I you can see below (right scale in days) and this model used for plugin:


For supernova type II we use typical light curve with plato, which you can see below (right scale in days):


On both images for light curves of maximum brightness marked as day 0.

Version history

Plug-in version Stellarium version Significant changes
0.2.3 0.11.0 First public version of plugin
0.2.7 0.11.1 Added SN2011FE, fixed few bugs, improved info for display
0.2.8 0.11.2 Fixed few bugs
0.2.9 0.11.3 Fixed few bugs (stabilization of code)
0.2.11 0.11.4 Added GUI to plug-in
0.2.12 0.12.0 Use new rendering engine of core
0.2.14 0.12.2 Improvements for search tool. Updated code. Improvements for GUI.
0.2.16 0.12.3 Improvements for labels displaying.
0.2.17 0.13.0 Bug fixing.


We thank the following people for their contribution and of the valuable comments:

How you can help

We are welcome bug reports, feature requests and feedback through the usual channels (trackers, forums and so on).

Personal tools
in this wiki
other languages