HET Finding Chart Info and Tools

Jump to: Rules & Regulations Postscript Charts FITS Charts

Rules and Regulations

According to the Phase II instructins you must make hardcopies of finding charts (on 8.5 by 11 inch paper) for ALL objects in your object list. Each finding chart must be clearly labeled with the following:

This page offers you two simple software tools for displaying and annotating finding charts. After reading the warnings and disclaimers, check out what's available.

Warnings and Disclaimers: As far as I know, a number of things can go wrong with these programs which are out of my control. Hence, I cannot be of much help with them. These potential problems have to do with your local installation of TeX and/or PGPLOT. I have tried to provide some hints and tips on how to get around them, but I cannot promise success.

Annotating and Beautifying Postscript Charts

Example (click on the frames to enlarge):


The tool is a TeX file that calls psfig.tex to incorporate finding charts from postscript files and annotate them with the usual information requested by the HET resident astronomers.

The user is supposed to have the finding charts in postscript files, one chart per file, with north on the top and east to the left. The file names and relevant information are entered in theTeX file directly and the macro is duplicated as many times as necessary. The information needed to annotate each chart is

R.A. and Dec (J2000) Name and magnitude of object dimensions of field

To use this tool, download the following files. The TeX file includes instructions for how to use it. To download, you may need to press <shift> while clicking on the file names.

Displaying and Annotating FITS Charts

Examples (click on the frame to enlarge)


fitschartplot is a program that makes finding charts using images from FITS files. It assumes that you have downloaded the image in a FITS file from the STScI digitized sky survey tool available on the web. This program is designed specifically for that format: it expects the image pixels to be described by a 2-byte integer, and the header to have all the necessary information. It is also assumed that the target object is centered in the field of the image so that it can be marked by cross-hairs simply by marking the center (but read about cross-hairs below to see what you can do if the object is not centered). The output is a postscript file or screen plot, which is annotated automatically using the information in the FITS header. One can, in principle, put many charts on a single page. You can run it either interactively or from a command file.

To use it you have download the files listed below and use them to build it. You must also have PGPLOT installed locally since this program relies on it. The README file, below, includes all the instructions for how to build and run the program. To download, you may need to press <shift> while clicking on the file names.