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Thread: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

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    New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    There's now a new page which includes a google maps tool for showing where and when the sun will rise and set, along with the twilight times for your particular location.

    Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Calculator

    Feedback. Is there anything else you'd like to see included in this tool? Is there anything about the user interface that could be made easier? Also, the times given by this calculator should be as accurate (or more so) than anything else out there. If you notice any odd discrepancies, please let me know.


    New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight TimesNew Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight TimesNew Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight TimesNew Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight TimesNew Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times
    New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Instructions. You may see a message in your browser asking permission to share your location; if you accept, then your present location will be automatically estimated on the map. Otherwise it will default to GMT and you can move the location marker or search for your location in the box above the map. Your date and local time are also automatically entered.

    FYI, this is mainly intended as a learning tool, and as a companion to the earlier intro tutorial on making the most of natural light in photography. As others have pointed out, there are also several useful mobile phone apps out there which estimate these times, so for in-the-field use those are worth looking into as well. Maybe someday I'll lump all of the site tools into an all-in-one photographer's toolkit app for Android and iPhone...

    PS: I'm also preparing a separate night photography tool which includes moon ephemeris dates, moonrise and moonset, astronomical twilight, current moon, etc.

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Very interesting Sean, the angled lines look useful.

    Please explain "Very high latitudes may also have more than one sunrise or sunset in a single day, but this calculator only mentions the first of each occurrence." is that just the sun going behind topographical features, or something else?

    It does seem to have a life of its own once you start it scrolling, stopping where you want is nigh on impossible

    Very hand resource to have though, thanks,

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    Sam Smith's Avatar
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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Very handy. I have finally found a place that would be good for me to take pictures of the city with the evening sky. Thanks

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    That's a slick calculator Sean..

    To get a more accurate determination of just where they will be rising or setting, I use a free program called "Stellarium". Enter your coordinates and it shows you the night sky in real time, where the Sun and Moon will rise and set along with data on every object out in space..planets, nebula's, stars, clusters, galaxies and more. It includes an altitude/azimuth grid overlay so by simply using your compass you can determine just where you want to be set-up in order to catch the Sunrise or Moonrise from the best angle.

    Quote Originally Posted by McQ View Post
    PS: I'm also preparing a separate night photography tool which includes moon ephemeris dates, moonrise and moonset, astronomical twilight, current moon, etc.
    Sweet...looking forward to that one! New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Mike

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Humphries View Post
    Please explain "Very high latitudes may also have more than one sunrise or sunset in a single day, but this calculator only mentions the first of each occurrence." is that just the sun going behind topographical features, or something else?
    Believe it or not, that's a real sunrise/sunset -- not just the sun passing behind and in front of mountains. There are also days when the sun only sets, or only rises. These are really rare though, and you have to be near the poles during the right time of year (and even then, the second occurrence would still be just before midnight). Since this is such a corner case I thought about not even mentioning it. How many people do we think this would seriously apply to anyways...?
    Last edited by McQ; 27th September 2011 at 04:49 AM.

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Quote Originally Posted by McQ View Post
    Since this is such a corner case I thought about not even mentioning it. How many people do we think this would seriously apply to anyways...?
    Taking the last part first, probably minimal, but someone planning a trip up there may find it useful

    Quote Originally Posted by McQ View Post
    There are also days when the sun only sets, or only rises.
    Yes I guess at the beginning and end of the permanent dark/light this must be so. Are there other occassions when it just happens to pass midnight before it happens? - Yes, that's what you meant about a second occurrence, the day following might be one of those single event days I guess.

    What a funny world we inhabit

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Good Job Sean...

    Here is the one I have been using...

    http://www.timeanddate.com/worldclock/sunrise.html

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Impressive tool, I already have plans for it in my photography.

    I have and use Stellarium and SkyMapPro ( not free ), StarryNight ( also not free ) is supposed to be good and I received a copy with my Orion Maksutov Cassegrain, but when I tried to install it, the whole thing blew up when it attempted to install and configure ASCOM with out asking me if the computer would even be used for telescope control.

    A great site for Astronomy, Comets, Sun, Moon, Planets & Minor Planets, Satellites, supporting multiple observing locations is the DLR hosted Heavens-Above
    Last edited by Steaphany; 27th September 2011 at 03:39 PM. Reason: typo

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    This tool is called an ephemeris. There are several that are available for the iPhone/iPad that have many more features than the one you have posted. For instance "The Photographers Ephemeris" also can calculate mooonrise and set, and utilizes Geodetic survey maps that allow the program to compute when the sun/moon will rise over a mountain etc. This allows you to determine, for example if you are in a valley, when the sun will shine there. The app costs $8.99. There are other lower cost apps with lower user ratings, too, some of them free.

    Birdtwitcher

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Richard & Steaphany: thanks for sharing the tools you've been using -- all very helpful. With astronomy, it's particularly amazing what you can plan using online tools.

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Quote Originally Posted by Birdtwitcher View Post
    This tool is called an ephemeris. There are several that are available for the iPhone/iPad that have many more features than the one you have posted. For instance "The Photographers Ephemeris" also can calculate mooonrise and set, and utilizes Geodetic survey maps that allow the program to compute when the sun/moon will rise over a mountain etc. This allows you to determine, for example if you are in a valley, when the sun will shine there. The app costs $8.99. There are other lower cost apps with lower user ratings, too, some of them free.

    Birdtwitcher
    I've been using TPE for a couple of years. It may cost $8.99 if you're using it on a smart phone, but a download to a PC (and probably a MAC too) is free. It would be interesting for someone to do a comparison.
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 28th September 2011 at 08:16 PM.

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Until now I used http://www.golden-hour.com/.
    But I prefer this one. My location was not automatically detected, but just given the village name was enough. Very handy to look at other places, no coordinates needed and no searching on a map.
    The angles for sunrise and sunset are also extremely useful. I like the tool very much already!

    Thanks Sean for sharing this with us.

    Pierre

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    I've got one question Sean.

    For example I'm looking for Saint-Etienne in France. I will automatically find the one (the biggest one) near Lyon. But what if, I want a different Saint-Etienne (there are several in France). How do I get those?

    Pierre

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    What about good old NZ? I know we're at the bottom of the world but....
    The tool automatically detected where I was but then there wasn't an NZ on the drop down so it defaulted to GMT.

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Quote Originally Posted by Pjerry View Post
    For example I'm looking for Saint-Etienne in France. I will automatically find the one (the biggest one) near Lyon. But what if, I want a different Saint-Etienne (there are several in France). How do I get those?
    Hi Pierre. You can also search by landmark, which might be easier in your case. Just add the landmark along with Saint-Etienne in the search field. It's all google-powered so the entries are pretty flexible. Alternatively, add another word as a qualifier, such as "Ville de Saint-Etienne" or "De Saint-Etienne Claire" or "Cellier des Saint-Etienne" and so on... Hope this helps.
    Last edited by McQ; 28th September 2011 at 08:05 PM.

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Quote Originally Posted by Jillinnz View Post
    What about good old NZ? I know we're at the bottom of the world but....
    The tool automatically detected where I was but then there wasn't an NZ on the drop down so it defaulted to GMT.
    Hi Jill: Looks like "GMT+12 (New Zealand)" was accidentally left off the list. That has now been added, so the calculator ought to auto-detect it correctly now. No exclusion was intended!

    PS: now that I look at it more, I also need to add Nepal and Chatham Island (both have odd 45 minute time zone offsets relative to GMT)
    Last edited by McQ; 28th September 2011 at 08:03 PM.

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    Re: New Tool: Sunrise, Sunset & Twilight Times

    Thanks Sean, I will try that.

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