AstroWideImageMapper – and Related / Similar Software

AstroWideImageMapper (AWIM)

The AstroWideImageMapper (AWIM) project aims to enable users to label images of any format – particularly wide-angle – with with pixel-by-pixel directional astronomical coordinate data, i.e. directional azimuth and altitude.

FITS Images

FITS stands for “Flexible Image Transport System.” FITS images are indeed “images” tagged with astronomical data. There are various tools enabling the user to convert among FITS and many other image formats. While FITS images are tagged with flexible astronomical metadata, the quotes around “image” are appropriate. FITS are not strictly images, they are more like observatory data files. From the link above:

“FITS data arrays contain elements which typically represent the values of a physical quantity at some coordinate location. Consequently they need not contain any pixel rendering information in the form of transfer functions, and there is no mechanism for color look-up tables. An application should provide this functionality, either statically using a more or less sophisticated algorithm, or interactively allowing a user various degrees of choice.”


EXIF version 2.32, released in 2019, did not contain azimuth or altitude directional data. All references to altitude are location with respect to sea level, not direction. There is one reference to azimuth, but it refers to the azimuth of GPS satellites received by the camera at snapshot time.

Astro-Photography Tool

The primary purpose of APT is to help astro-photographers control their cameras with software and plan photo shoots of the stars.


OpenCV is open-source python dealing with image distortion.

Adobe Photoshop and Lightroom

Adobe Photoshop has a various tools aimed at image distortion and some of the tools are included in Lightroom as well.

Google Sky

Google Sky is a phone app that enables the user to point the phone in any direction and see a labeled version of the sky in that direction. While Google Sky is impressive, it suffers from receiving its directional data entirely from the phone’s sensors, which can be particularly inaccurate because of azimuth.

Of note, I believe there is another similar app to Google Sky and there are certainly various computer programs with 3-D explorable models of the solar system, galaxy, and even universe to the extent we humans have mapped it.


TawbaWare is used by astro-photgraphers, but primarily focuses on image stitching rather than directional data.