Centre de données astronomiques de Strasbourg

The Strasbourg astronomical data center (CDS) provides reference astronomical services:

  • SIMBAD is the reference database for identification and bibliography of astronomical objects (outside the solar system).
  • VizieR is a catalogue service for large sky surveys, catalogues and tables published in academic papers, and more and more other data associated to publications.
  • The interactive sky atlas Aladin provides an interactive portal to access image collections and databases available via Virtual Observatory protocols.
  • The CDS cross-match service allows to do positional cross-matching of very large catalogues.

Presentation of CDS


The CDS is an astronomical data center operated at the Strasbourg astronomical observatory in France, a research unit of Université de Strasbourg and CNRS.

In operation since 1972, it has developed some reference services for astronomy, and is a major actor of the Virtual Observatory project.

The team of about 30 people, includes astronomers for scientific expertise, computer engineers for software development and documentalists feeding the databases.

The CDS mission is to collect useful information concerning astronomical objects; upgrade these data by critical evaluations and comparisons; distribute the results to the astronomical community; and conduct research using these data.

The CDS hosts the SIMBAD astronomical database, the world reference for the identification of astronomical objects and their bibliography; VizieR, the catalogue service, providing access to thousands of astronomical catalogues and tables published in academic journals; and Aladin, an interactive sky atlas for access, visualization and analysis of astronomical images, surveys, catalogues, and other databases.

CDS hosts other services, like support for publication of catalogue data in collaboration with major academic journals and a powerful cross-match engine to perform positional associations between catalogues.

You can use the CDS portal to start exploring what data are available for your favourite object in the various services.

These services are used by the astronomical research community, but also by amateurs and educators worldwide. And the CDS has collaborations with CNES, ESA, ESO, NASA, and other institutes hosting mirrors of some of its services.


Tags: astronomie cds observatoire open data




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