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Astropysics: astrophysics utilities for python

Author:Erik Tollerud

Astropysics is a library containing a variety of utilities and algorithms for reducing, analyzing, and visualizing astronomical data. Best of all, it encourages the user to leverage the existing capabilities of Python to make this quick, easy, and as painless as cutting-edge science can even actually be. There do exist other Python packages with some of the capabilities of this project, but the goal of this project is to integrate all these tools together and make them interact in the most straightforward ways possible.


The functionality of Astropysics is currently being incorporated into the Astropy project. Astropy is a wider community effort, and to avoid wasting resources, most of the energy that initially went into developing Astropysics have been shifted to Astropy. As a result, Astropysics is no longer getting new features - those efforts are now in Astropy. Within the next few versions of Astropy, we expect it will include all the functionality of Astropysics (and more).

Astropysics will continue to be supported in the form of bug fixes, though, and will be available for use roughly in its current form for the foreseeable future. So any existing code can continue to use Astropysics, but for new work, I suggest you begin transitioning to Astropy if it supports your needs.

Quick Install

See Installing Astropysics for full install instructions, including prerequisite packages.

To install a current release of astropysics, the simplest approach is:

pip install astropysics

(on unix-like systems or OS X, add “sudo ” before this command)

If you want the must up-to-date (possible unstable) version, do:

hg clone https://astropysics.googlecode.com/hg/ astropysics-dev
cd astropysics-dev
python setup.py develop

(note that mercurial must be installed, and on some systems the last command may need to have “sudo ” at the beginning)

You can also alter the source code if you use this approach (see Developer Guidelines for Astropysics for guidelines of working contributing source code).

In either case, afterwords you can run:


to install optional packages and setup the environment.

Bug Reports

The best place to report bugs is via the google code bug tracker. That way they won’t be forgotten unless an asteroid impact destroys all of google’s servers.


Lead Developer

  • Erik Tollerud


  • Sebastian Gurovich
  • Alex Hagen
  • Frederic Grollier

Logo Image Credit

The multiwavelength image of M81 was put together by the folks at the Chandra X-Ray Observatory (http://chandra.harvard.edu/photo/2008/m81/), and they credit: “X-ray: NASA/CXC/Wisconsin/D.Pooley & CfA/A.Zezas; Optical: NASA/ESA/CfA/A.Zezas; UV: NASA/JPL-Caltech/CfA/J.Huchra et al.; IR: NASA/JPL-Caltech/CfA”. The Python logo can be found at http://www.python.org/community/logos/.

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