Catalog File Overview

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Cosmographia uses catalog files to define solar system objects and their properties. Catalog files for many solar system natural bodies come pre-packaged with the Cosmographia application and use ephemeris, orientation, and shape models also included with or built into the program. All catalog files are written in JavaScript Object Notation (JSON). Cosmographia users can create and load into the program additional catalog files defining new objects or redefining existing objects.
The following kinds of catalog files are usually involved in defining objects for a SPICE-based mission:
SPICE Data Catalog
Catalog listing additional SPICE kernels that need to be loaded to run a visualization for a particular mission
Spacecraft Catalog
Catalog defining trajectory, orientation, appearance, name label, and trajectory plot parameters for a spacecraft
Sensor Catalog
Catalog defining sensor Field-Of-View (FOV) location, orientation, and appearance
Observation Catalog
Catalog defining observation times and footprint appearance for observations of a target taken by a sensor
Natural Body Catalog
Catalog defining trajectory, orientation, appearance, name label, and trajectory plot parameters for planets, satellites, comets and asteroids
Catalog List Catalog
Catalog defining a set of catalog files that should be loaded together
The subsections linked from the table above provide examples and brief descriptions of the contents of different kinds of catalog files. A more detailed description of some of these catalog files is provided in the Cosmographia-SPICE User’s Guide.
The following kinds of catalog files define additional, more generic features and objects:
Annotations Catalog
Catalog file defining time-dependent annotation messages displayed at top of the screen
Visualizers Catalog
Catalog file defining graphical primitives (visualizers) such as planes
Surface Features Catalog
Catalog file defining names and locations of surface features for a natural body
View Point Catalog
Catalog file defining the initial view point when the program is launched without any command line arguments
Add-ons Catalog
Catalog file defining add-ons that appear in the Visualization Setting Add-ons panel
The links in the table above point to a set of very brief examples of these catalogs