Occult Watcher 3.2


The asteroidal and mutual satellite events that OccultWatcher has found to match your filter criteria are listed in the main form as shown below:

Various parameters about the events are shown in a tabular format. You can sort the events by a column value by clicking on the column header. The columns displayed in the table as well as their display name are fully customizable. You can customize them either by right-clicking on a column and then choosing "Choose Columns" or from the "Choose Columns" button in the configuration form.

There is a big list of columns to choose from. You can reorder the columns as well as to change their display name. It is recommended but not necessary to keep "Asteroid Name" as column No.1 and "Event Date" or "Remaining Time" as a column No.2. Most of the names of the columns are self explandatory. "Separation" is the separation angle between the center of the asteroid and the star as predicted to be visible from your current home location. "Chord Offset" is a special way to measure the your chord and you can read more about it here.

The first column from the table will also have a small icon that will tell you more about the position of your home site and/or the event. For the asteroidal events the icon indicates the position of your site in the predicted shadow or may have a special meaning (see below).

Blue rectangle indicates that your site is in the predicted shadow.
Red rectangle indicates that your site is within the predicted 1-sigma limit but not in the predicted shadow.
White rectangle indicates that your site outside the predicted 1-sigma limit.

Additionally the following four special icons are used:

Two blue spots mean that this is a double or a suspected double asteroid for which the prediction for the main body does not come close to you, but for which considering the satellites distances from the main body and your filters could bring one of the satelloids within your filter distance.
A small car icon means that you *must* travel to see the star. This is shown for events for which at your selected location the star is below your nominated altitude, but there is a place within your specified travel distance for which the star altitude will be above your nominated minimum.
A green exclamation mark means that the event is marked to be part of your "My Events" but the current filter does not include it. For your convenience all events you have marked as "My Event" are always shown!
A red exclamation mark has a meaning that may be a little confusing so please read carefully. It happens quite often that events from the IOTA Update feed are also included in other feeds. However the other feeds' predictions are less accurate than the IOTA Updates ones and often the two predictions could differ by more than 100km.

If you have subscribed to feeds other than IOTA Updates and there is an event from one of them that satisfies your filter criteria BUT at the same time this very same event is also listed in IOTA Updates but the prediction from IOTA Updates does not satisfy your filter criteria (i.e. is predicted to be too far); OccultWatcher will always take the IOTA Updates prediction as the most accurate one and will "overwrite" the one for the same event coming from the other feed. Such an event will be marked with a red exclamation mark and most probably will not be very close to you. If you are using OccultWatcher in "Chronological Mode" (see below) the web details for the two predictions will be available.

OccultWatcher has its own way of weighting the predictions by considering star catalogs and asteroid orbit sources used by the various feeds. If there are duplicated predictions coming from different feeds, exactly one of them will be considered as the most accurate and all station coordination and chord offset computations for the observation planning will be done against this most accurate prediction.

Starting from version 3.1 OccultWatcher now shows mutual events of the satellites of the planets Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus. This icon indicates that this is a satellite event.

The background and the fogreground color of the events in the main form can be used as an indication of how old is the prediction for the particular event.

If the event is shown highlighted (black background and bright green text) this means that this is a new prediction (event) which you haven't seen so far or which prediction has been updated. Those highlighted events make your OccultWatcher go mental and play annoying sounds and pop-up to tell you that there is something new or updated :) To mark the event as "reviewed" you need to select it once i.e. click on it. After that OccultWatcher will consider this event as being reviewed and won't highlight it again unless the prediction gets updated.

If an event has been updated in the past 5 days it will have a green background. If this is a new event which hasn't been shown so far it will have a "new" label at the end of the line. If the event has been updated it will have one or more asterisks indicating the number of times its prediction has been updated.

If the event has already passed then it will be grayed out. OccultWatcher keeps showing events that have passed in accordance with your configured settings. Showing past events is useful for preparing your observation reports.

If the event involves a know double asteroid there will be two asterisks ** appended to its display name. Appended **? means the asteroid is a suspected double. To get more information use right click -> Additonal Event Details -> Asteroid.

If you right click in the events list and choose "Additional Event Details", OccultWatcher will show you more information about the star, asteroid, event and the prediction updates.

The first tab shows information about the star, including the name and coordinates from the prediction as well as star aliases (from other catalogues) as returned by the VisieR web service and astrometric and photometric data from the NOMAD catalogue. You need to be connected to internet to use this functionality.

Asteroid specific information such as orbital elements and physical parameters including information about double / suspected double asteroids is displayed in the second tab. Active internet connection is also required for some of the data displayed in this tab.

The 'Event' tab shows occultation details such as event time at the selected location, magnitude drop, path and sigma widths, star and sun altitude, moon distance, illumination and others. You can also save an Occelmnt file locally if the prediction is comes from an Occelmnt-enabled feed. In version 3.2 Occelmnt-enabled are all feeds except E.A.O.N and LinOccult Personal Predictions.

The last tab shows you the prediction update history as well as predictions for the same event coming from other feeds. The shift is the computed distance between the previous and the current prediction. The user can click on the links to see the map of the previous versions of the prediction or see the predictions coming from different feeds. Also when more than one feeds list the current event, the difference between the latest predictions of the different feeds will be shown.

If there have been previous successfully observed occultations involving the current asteroid, then there will be one more visible tab - "Previous Observations". All previously reported observations and individual chords and observers will be shown. This optoins requires an active internet connection.

Occult Watcher's status bar (at the bottom of the form) shows the current status and may show more than one messages at a time. Those messages include:

Analysing - OW is checking all downloaded predictions to see which match your filter criteria.
Synchronisation scheduled - From ver 3.2 OccultWatcher doesn't run a Synchronisation immediately after it has been started but schedules it in 10 minutes. This is done to decrease the load on the computer when rebooted.
Synchronising - The displayed feed is being checked for updates.
Last updated on ... - Shows the last time a synchronisation has been performed.
Idle - You can see this status if you use OW configured for a "Manual Synchronisation".
There is a new version is shown when there is a new version. Click on the green label to start the upgrade to this new version.
Error - Indicates that an error has occurred during the update. If you click on the label it will show more details.

- An animated rotating globe indicates that there is an internet related activity happening at the moment, such as: synchronisation, retrieving information about an even from the OccultPlanner service, retrieving other information from internet etc.