Guide to adding comets by writing data directly to the comet.txt file (V6 Only)


    Here is a step by step example for writing 103P/Hartley 2 data directly to the Comets.txt files stored in the Sky Data folder.  You can add single or multiple comets using this method.


    1.  Go to


    2.  Enter 103P/Hartley 2 into the search box.  Using_the_Minor_Planet___Comet_Ephemeris_Service.png

    Make sure under "Format for elements output:" you select "Starry Night (Sienna Software)":



    3.  Click on 


    4.  An elements.txt will be downloaded to your computer.


    5.  Open the elements.txt file and you will see the following:



    6.  Open the Starry Night comets.txt file, add the new line of data, and save.


    Note, I have changed its name from Hartley to 103P/Hartley 2.

    The comets.txt file is located in the following locations:

    Windows: (C:) ---> ProgramFiles ---> Starry Night folder ---> SkyData ---> Comets.txt

    Mac OSX: Macintosh HD ---> Applications ---> Starry Night folder ---> right click the Starry Night program icon ---> Choose "Show package contents" ---> Contents ---> Resources ---> Sky Data ---> Comets.txt


    7.  Start Starry Night.  Open the FIND tab.  Search for "103P" (begins with) and the comet will show up:



    Minor Planet Center's orbital elements for 103P/Hartley 2 are attached (April 2012) if you wish to use them.


    • Avatar
      Amazing post
    • Avatar
      Keiron Smith

      Thanks!  Are you using V6 or V7?

    • Avatar
      Karina Ponce

      Thanks a lot!! it worked just fine to add Wirtanen in my Starry Night Orion Special Edition.