Planet positions in excel

by Silverbug
Tags: excel, planet, positions
Silverbug is offline
Dec2-12, 07:03 PM
P: 3
Hi All,

I wanted to see if it were conceivable to create a spreadsheet you could calculate the position of planets within our solar system given a lat and long position and using the current time?

I've tried searching for something similar, or formulas to calculate these, but haven't had much luck. perhaps I'm just not looking for the right thing.

I eventually want to be able to create something in php, but figured getting it in Excel to start with may be a better way of approaching it.

Any help or suggestions would be hugely appreciated.
Phys.Org News Partner Astronomy news on
First potentially habitable Earth-sized planet confirmed: It may have liquid water
A sharp eye on Southern binary stars
Hubble image: A cross-section of the universe
Bandersnatch is offline
Dec3-12, 12:26 AM
P: 551
What you're looking for is called "ephemeris"(pl. ephemerides).
You can find both astronomical and astrological ephemerides on the net. Shockingly, the latter ones are not necessarily complete bollocks, but might use some weird coordinate system.

Here's a couple of sites for finding (astronomical)ephemerides:

And here's a guide on how to calculate planetary positions as used by the second one of the tools linked above:

Whether it's doable in spreadsheets is a different kettle of fish.
Silverbug is offline
Dec4-12, 02:38 AM
P: 3
thanks Bandersnatch, really appreciate the help and explination i'll have a look through these sites and give it a go :)

Silverbug is offline
Dec16-12, 11:16 PM
P: 3

Planet positions in excel

I've had a look at the last link in there and can't figure out why when I input the formula I get slightly different values. I don't believe it rounding issues as the variance is too large.
Philosophaie is offline
Dec17-12, 11:17 AM
P: 365
The formulas are correct.

It is just that data from JPL Horizons is actual data measures from the Barycenter Model and the data calculated my not be as accurate.

Try more accurate data:

Look at links on the bottom.

Register to reply

Related Discussions
Star Positions from the past to new positions--Precession Astrophysics 0
Calculating a and b in excel (any excel masters)? Introductory Physics Homework 4
Planet Hunters: First Two Planet Candidates Identified General Astronomy 2
Planet positions and gravitational effects Astrophysics 3
satellite question. find mass of planet and weight on planet? Introductory Physics Homework 2