I am searching for a good image that explains the field of view as seen from a certain latitude. Example: an observer standing on earth has limited view due to the horizon. Furthermore, he sees all stars in 23,56 hrs. (not all visible due to sun..)

I am searching and searching but can not find an easy image with our earth, a field of view (cone) the whole sky, and the observable sky.

Maybe someone of you has such an image. Would really appreciate this !!

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    $\begingroup$ I do not know of any images, but I wanted to mention that all stars are not visible during 24 hours. If at one of the Earth's pole, the Earth permanently blocks half of the sky. At the equator, theoretically the Earth does not permanently block any of the sky (but then atmospheric extinction "blocks" some of the fainter stars near the pole). In between the pole and equator, different percentages of the sky are permanently blocked. $\endgroup$
    – JohnHoltz
    Feb 7, 2023 at 17:57
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    $\begingroup$ Not a cone, a hemisphere. At any one time half the sky is above the horizon, and half the sky is below. $\endgroup$
    – James K
    Feb 7, 2023 at 17:59

1 Answer 1


Many planetarium programs will allow you to do this. For example, the first screenshot below is from Stellarium. I turned off the "ground" and "atmosphere" and changed the projection mode to "cylindrical". The grid is the alt/az grid, with the horizon being the straight vertical lines with the cardinal points marked.

The second is a Hammer-Aitoff projection, with the horizon being the circle with the cardinal points marked.

Many more projection modes and options are available just in Stellarium, other software will likely have other options.

enter image description here enter image description here

  • $\begingroup$ Great answer, +1. There is also a program called celestia $\endgroup$
    – user47732
    Feb 8, 2023 at 13:18

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