Sphere Builder is software for creating 3D planet and planetary moon globes as illustrations for astronomical documents, web sites, applications, etc.
Sphere Builder comes with textures of all planets (sorry, Saturn not yet with rings), 22 planetary moons and 16 exoplanet classes. In addition, you can create plain colored globes and add overlays, such as clouds, ice and spacecrafts in orbit.
Custom textures can be added to external memory (required). Most Android devices expect textures to be sized to the power of two, i.e., 256 x 128, 512 x 256, 1024 x 512, etc. Larger textures will result in finer globes, however at the expense of CPU load and memory. Most phones can handle texture sizes up to 4096 x 2048.
The size of saved square images depends on your phone's screen width in pixels. If your screen is 640 pixels wide, the saved image will be 640 x 640 pixels in PNG format. A small collection of samples are copied to the SD card at first run.
Sphere Builder loads an internal or external custom texture and wraps it around a globe. You can then change the brightness, longitude and latitude of the night shadow or remove it.
A globe can be rotated or panned with your finger while zooming and reset to default values are provided as well.
A configured image can be saved from within the application. If your phone runs Android 2.2 or higher then you may as well wish to take a screen snap. Press the home and the power key simutaneously to save the screen to an image file.
If not for required for illustrations, Sphere Builder is an ideal viewer of 3D planets and moons. Use of this software provides basic knowledge of astronomy.
BEFORE YOU PURCHASE:
This application is believed to be reliable and accurate, however, errors inherent to the human factor or operating system implementation cannot be ruled out entirely.
1. Please appreciate that the author cannot purchase all hardware and provider contracts for the large number of Android devices currently on the market. Please be so kind as to send a report preferably with screen snap should you encounter any layout issues.
2. This application requires Android 2.2 or higher and a display which is to the Android standard.
3. This application depends on correct implementation of OpenGL while requiring high CPU performance.
4. Please contact the author, if you have any pre-sales questions.
Ver 1.04: Better compatibility with hi-res screens, added MOM orbiter (India).
Ver 1.03: landscape mode added, compatible with 10inch (1280x800px) tablets
Ver 1.02: More spacecrafts, backgrounds can be added
Ver 1.01: Adds overlay of spacecrafts and shuttles (see snap #7).
Ver 1.00: first market launch.