December 8, 2019: Astroplan v0.6
Merry Christmas, observers!
Just in time for the holidays, there's a new version of astroplan for you to download! You
can upgrade quickly with
pip install --upgrade astroplan. Here's a little
preview of what's in the new version, and an overview of how astroplan has been doing over
the last few years as we look back on the decade.
astroplan is an open source,
Python observation planning package for astronomers, which helps you plan for everything but
the clouds. A detailed recap of the functionality and design decisions behind
astroplan is available in the
and the online narrative docs contain lots of
example code to get you started.
In version 0.6, we've implemented one major addition to the API
to make astroplan faster in some use cases. The target/sun/moon rise
and set functions now take a new (optional) keyword argument called
This argument sets how finely astroplan searches for target rise and set times. Previously,
this parameter's value was fixed to
150, and now it has been exposed in the
user-facing API, allowing users to throttle the accuracy of the rise/set time computations
in exchange for speed. There are more details about the change in astroplan's
narrative docs here,
check it out!
This performance improvement was motivated by some of the more demanding use-cases astroplan has encountered over the last year, like scheduling for MMTO, and scheduling for the Terra Hunting Experiment (at the INT).
It has been rewarding to see astroplan catch on "in the wild" over the last few years. Here's how astroplan installation via pip has grown over the last few years:
Without a doubt, 2019 has been a great year for astroplan, thanks to your help. I'm looking forward to 2020!