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The Photographer's Ephemeris - Sun, Moon and Night Photography Planning For Outdoor Photographers

By Crookneck Consulting LLC

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"Head and shoulders above the crowd is The Photographer’s Ephemeris. Odd name, great app." - National Geographic

The Photographer's Ephemeris (TPE) helps plan outdoor photography shoots in natural light, particularly landscape and urban scenes. It's a map-centric Sun, Moon and Milky Way calculator: see how the light will fall on the land, day or night, for any location on earth.

Whether you need at-a-glance information on today's sun and moon data for your current location, or need to plan a precise alignment of the full moon for a future shoot, TPE has the tools you need. The combination of line-of-sight analysis with visual search supports the most sophisticated sun/moon research needs.

"It worked perfectly. The program was dead on…" - National Geographic

"One of the most powerful photography applications that I've seen, one that you'll be using for years and years." - AdoramaTV

"a godsend of an app for forward-thinking landscape photographers" - MSN Tech & Gadgets

"One of the most useful apps for any nature photographer" - Outdoor Photographer Magazine

"Get it. This is a quality application that has been very thoughtfully and carefully designed." 5 Stars -

Night mode features a 3D representation of the Milky Way, pole stars and major constellations directly over the map, so you can easily visualize exactly how to align your shot.

Research and save your own list of favorite photographic locations, using 7 different map types (including two offline maps) and save them in your locations list. Favorite locations are always displayed right on the map.

Advanced features including visual sun and moon search, automatic time zone and elevation detection, correction for atmospheric refraction and height above the horizon, ensuring that you have the best possible information for planning your shoot.

You can even determine when the sun or moon will rise from behind nearby hills and mountains.

Key features:

- Time/direction of sun, moon, and galactic center rise/set
- View azimuth and altitude of sun/moon and the galactic center for any time of day/night
- Milky Way visualization via 3D map overlay
- Moon phase and % illumination
- Civil, nautical and astronomical twilight
- 2 topographical/terrain map types
- 2 offline map options
- Movable map pins: drag and drop the pin exactly where you need it
- Map autorotation using the compass (on compatible devices)
- Shadow lengths displayed to scale on map
- Save any location you want: no fixed lists
- Celestial events including moon phases, apogee, perigee, solstice, equinox
- Network connection not required for rise/set time, azimuths and sun/moon position

Advanced features:

- Automatic time zone detection
- Elevation above sea level
- Distance, bearing and elevation angle between any two points
- Location import/export from KML
- Magnetic north option
- Configurable timeline display
- Sun/moon transit times
- 'Golden hour' time/duration
- Light pollution overlay

Geek features:

- Line of sight analysis
- Find when the sun/moon will appear from behind a hill or ridge
- Advanced visual sun and moon search
- Azimuth or altitude search priority
- New crescent moon visibility
- Distance to the visible horizon

Available map types include:

- Standard, Satellite/Hybrid, Terrain
- OpenCycleMap Topographic
- OpenStreetMap

Location synch between devices and the TPE web app is available via in-app purchase (3 month free trial available, requires free account sign-up).

Sunrise/sunset color forecasts are available with a subscription to the Skyfire service, available via in-app purchase.


- Maps and elevation-based calculations require a data connection, except for offline map tiles previously downloaded and stored on your device
- Topographic map data is available only between 60°N and 47°S
- Availability of map types is subject to change, due to 3rd party map service availability, terms or conditions
- Future updates to TPE may require iOS 9 or higher

What's New in Version 3.6.1

- Fixes truncated information messages on iPad (e.g. "Sunr...")
- Fixes crash on toggling stars overlay on/off when in Day Mode

- Touch the stars! In night mode, tap a star to see its common name, Bayer designation and current apparent altitude and azimuth
- Stars can be enabled or disabled using a new map overlay option (the Milky Way is always displayed in Night mode)
- Rise/set captions in timeline are shown in italics if elevation at horizon is set
- Elevation at horizon page now shows the dip of the horizon (positive value indicates a dip, e.g. how much below the horizon you can see on account of being elevated above it such as when standing on a high cliff looking out to sea)
- 12-month subscription options added for Skyfire
- Improved iOS9 compatibility
- Bug fixes

To enable Night Mode:

- Tap the Date at the top of the screen
- Choose the moon + stars option under Mode
- Night mode is selected

The Bayer designation for a star is formed of a greek letter (α, β, γ, where α is the brightest star in the constellation), followed by the constellation name (in the Latin genitive form), e.g. Sirius is known as α Canis Majoris, the brightest star in Canis Major.

Note: this update also migrates the stored locations database into a shared app group folder for compatibility with future planned updates. A backup of your locations is made as part of the update process. You can access this backup if required via iTunes on your desktop or laptop machine.

What else would you like to see in the app? Write to us at and let us know!


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The Photographer's Ephemeris - Sun, Moon and Night Photography Planning For Outdoor Photographers
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This app is designed for both iPhone and iPad
  • $8.99
  • Category: Photo & Video
  • Updated:
  • Version: 3.6.1
  • Size: 32.4 MB
  • Language: English
  • Seller:

Compatibility: Requires iOS 8.1 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.

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Top In-App Purchases

  1. Skyfire Plus (1-year)$44.99
  2. Skyfire Plus (3-months)$14.99
  3. Location Synch (1 year)$0.99
  4. Skyfire (3-months)$9.99
  5. Skyfire (1-year)$29.99
  6. Upgrade to Skyfire Plus (3-months)$5.99
  7. Upgrade to Skyfire Plus (1-year)$15.99