An ambitious team of three has gathered in Copenhagen today April 12th. Danish Frede (fredefox) aka the coder, English Mark aka the polymath and Tiha aka the designer. Our main focus of research was the NEA Dataset. Understanding the dataset was really cumbersome without knowing celestial mechanics and we spent most of our energy from coffees, teas, beers and pizzas trying to grasp what various variables in the dataset actually mean.

This project is solving the Visualize the Asteroid Skies challenge.


For our project I initially wrote a parser for the MPCORB data. This is available at

We later decided to do something else: We were faced with the difficult task of trying to understand the data-set and we were limited by this. We decided to make a visualization of the asteroids in the dataset. This visualization should show the relative orbits of the different asteroids.

This task can be broken up into the following parts:

  • Draw ellipses with the correct parameters (major radius and eccentricity)
  • Center the foci in one spot
  • Rotate the ellipses so that their relative "orientation" are correct
  • Rotate the orbital plane in the z-axis (giving a 3d-representation)

Additional ideas:

  • Show a gradient from the comets current location to e.g it's position an hour ago.

We managed to implement the first two of these points. The project can be found here:

Color coding for the project:

  • blue ellipse - earth orbit
  • red ellipse - dangerous asteroids orbits
  • orange ellipse - other asteroids orbits

Project Information

License: GNU General Public License version 3.0 (GPL-3.0)

Source Code/Project URL:


Parser -


  • Tihana Sare
  • Mark Dear
  • Frederik Hanghøj Iversen