Python toolkit for managing catalogs of stars including tools for querying popular astronomy archives.

pip install thefriendlystars==0.0.2



the-friendly-stars is a Python toolkit for interacting with catalogs of stars and images of the sky. It can be used to make custom finder charts, as well as do a tiny bit of cross-matching across catalogs.

Following The Friendly Stars by Martha Evans Martin (1925), "the chief aim of this [package] is to share with others the pleasure which the writer has had in what may be called a relation of personal friendship with the stars." It is still a work in progress.


Please feel free to peruse the few examples of how thefriendlystars works in notebooks/, as well as the tests in the tests/. One simple usage would be to run

from thefriendlystars.constellations import Gaia
g = Gaia.from_cone('GJ1132')

to make a finder chart that would work for past, present, and future astronomers.

example finder chart of GJ1132


You should be able to install this simply by running pip install git+

If you want to be able to modify the code yourself, please also feel free to fork/clone this repository onto your own computer and install directly from that editable package. For example, this might look like:

git clone
cd craftroom/
pip install -e .

This will link the installed version of the thefriendlystars package to your local repository. Changes you make to the code in the repository should be reflected in the version Python sees when it tries to import thefriendlystars.


This package was written mostly by Zach Berta-Thompson, with contributions from Luci Ibarra Perez.