Saturn Flyby

This is a 320x200 FLI animation of a Voyager flyby of a Saturn-like planet. The flyby trajectory is "real" and was precalculated - it's a hyperbolic orbit. To run use your favourite FLI player for Windows or DOS, or better yet get X and play it using "xanim". Use "xanim +p flyby.fli".

Technical details:

This animation was generated with the SImple Polygon Processor (SIPP) on a 486dx50 running Linux 1.0. Completed frames were quantised with ppmquant and converted to GIFs with ppmtogif (both from the excellent pbmplus package). The FLI was generated by converting the GIFs to FBMs and compiling them with fbm2fli.

The planetary surface detail is from an XPM I created using xpaint and then mapped onto the sphere with a surface shader in SIPP.

Using SIPP rather than POVray allowed me to create this in my own lifetime. On the whole I'm happy with the result but it could be a lot better. Send comments/suggestions to the above email address!


The moons are ficticious and the ring system only approximates that of the real Saturn. There is no moon or ring detail. Only the planet -> ring shadows are considered. The sequence isn't long enough. The time delta isn't small enough making the motion too jerky near the ring-plane crossing. Some fli players have trouble removing the blue title screen background from the flyby frames. The stars are just random rather than simulating the real sky.

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Last Modified Demenber 5, 1995