Friday, March 18, 2005

The Einstein@Home Starsphere Screensaver

Like SETI@Home but for something that is actually of scientific use and likely to happen, The Einstein@Home Starsphere Screensaver has a number of elements related to current efforts to detect gravitational radiation from periodic sources such as pulsars.

The primary element of the screensaver is a rotating celestial sphere showing the known constellations, along with the current zenith positions of three gravity wave detectors. Also shown are the positions of the known pulsars and supernovae remnants, and a marker indicating the positions being searched as the calculations proceed. When the graphics are shown in a separate window (not as a screensaver) the user can control the display with the mouse and keyboard.

When the graphics are displayed in a separate graphics window (rather than as a screensaver) you can control the display with the mouse and keyboard. To zoom in or out or rotate the starsphere hold down the appropriate mouse button and move the mouse up and down or left and right.

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