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SIPS v3.8.1
 New minor update of the Scientific Image Processing System software package was introduced to significantly speed up searching for new variables in the observed fields and at the same time it fixes one small problem in astrometry, affecting rotated images.

SIPS v3.8.1 makes distinguishing between already known variable stars and possibly new (yet undiscovered) ones much easier. Variable stars are typically searched using the pane showing a chart of Variability Index for each detected star within the field of view (such index can be either the RMS of the series over observing time, Variability Detection Index or a result of a neural network, trained to distinguish variable star light curve shape).

At the same time the SIPS Photometry tool can work with Field Description, which allows storing of already known variable stars together with their comparison and check stars for very fast processing of newly observed series.

Updated Variability Detection Index pane displays already known stars within the chart with different colors, depending on the star role in the Field Description. This feature immediately highlights which star is already included into Field Description (and thus is a known variable) and which is not known to be variable yet.


As individual star roles are displayed in their respective colors, this feature can show also possible high Variability index of some used comparison or check stars.

The highlighting of respective role in the Variability Detection Index chart uses colors used elsewhere in the Photometry tool (rings in images, points in the Light curve chart). However some user may suffer from lowered ability to distinguish colors, particularly the red and green used for VAR and CMP stars by default. To allow such user choosing colors more easily distinguished, the Set Colors dialog box was introduced to allow definition of all used colors (and possibly to define only shades of gray). Defined colors are used not only in the Variability Detection Index chart, but also on images, Light curve panes etc.

Bug fixes

SIPS v3.5 significantly modified the way matched catalog stars are overlaid on the image. But a small bug caused the algorithm expected the wider side of the image is always in the direction of the Right Ascension. When this was not the case (e.g. camera was rotated so the longer side of the sensor was in the direction of Declination), only cropped catalog overlay was loaded.

Please note the image was still successfully matched and coordinates of every star were calculated, only the matching catalog stars were not determined for stars outside the image center square area.

SIPS v3.8.1 fixes this problem and catalog overlay is always loaded for the whole image area regardless of the image orientation.

SIPS is a freeware and can be downloaded from the Download section of this web site.

Do you want to stay informed about new SIPS versions and features? Follow @sipssw on Twitter.

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