Guide Star Catalog

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Guide Star Catalog

A catalog of celestial objects, mainly stars, compiled at the Space Telescope Science Institute during the early 1980s. It served as the database for the sensitive guidance system of the Hubble Space Telescope. In its earliest published form, Version 1.2, it contained the positions of about 19 million objects, including some of the 16th magnitude. It was superseded by Version 2.2, which contained the positions for 435 million celestial objects down to the 19th magnitude. The Guide Star Catalog was compiled from the analysis of photographic plates and contains no proper motions. It is available on CD-ROM.
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The Hubble Guide Star Catalog is currently undergoing a thorough reworking known as GSC-II.
I create these charts using Guide 7, one of the charting programs that draws on the Hubble Guide Star Catalog with stars to about magnitude 14.
The latter costs $45 but includes the Hubble Guide Star Catalog and
The Hubble Guide Star Catalog, rightly considered standard equipment for star charts, does not come with XEphem, unless you purchase the CD-ROM version (see the box at left).
Edwin Goffin at Agfa-Gaevert, Belgium, provided the data used to compute the paths and other information given here, except that I have replaced his stellar data from the Hubble Guide Star Catalog, version 1.