HammerHarden is for Astronomy enthusiasts. Instantly, it can tell you:

What's up & What's not.


I enjoy watching close approaches of the Moon and bright planets. It is priceless to see the look on a person's face when you can identify the planets. In fact that is how I met my wife 23 years ago!

Here is how I set up my desktop:

• I launch Chrome.

• I resize the window to the height of my desktop.

• I resize the width to what you see in the accompanying image.

• I drag the window to the right-most edge of my desktop so that I can watch it unobstructed while I work.

• I click on the bookmark for my location as shown in highlight (B).

After a brief moment you will see something similar to the accompanying image.

There are a total of 12 panels: Site, Close Approach, Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, Mars, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto.

To duplicate what you see in the image: click the Collapse All button, and then click the down arrow on the Close Approach panel and the Moon panel. Scroll down a bit and you should see a similar layout.

Here is a brief explanation of the highlighted areas (A) through (H):

(A): The name of the selected site is shown in the page title. You can bookmark it!

(B): Shows one of several sites that I have bookmarked.

(C): Shows the angular distance and orientation between Mars and the Moon. (Since the Moon moves from west to east at a a rate of about 12 degrees per day, the Moon and Mars will be very close in about 24 hours.)

(D): Shows what a collapsed panel looks like. You can click on the down arrow to expand it. Also notice that the panel is colored blue. That means that the object, in this case the Sun, is above the horizon.

(E): Shows an expanded panel. You can click on the up arrow to collapse it. Also notice that the panel is NOT colored blue. That means that the object, in this case the Moon, is below the horizon.

(F): Shows the azimuth angle of the Moon. (The azimuth is the number of degrees east of north: 0 is north, 90 is east, 180 is south, and 270 is west.) But more importantly notice that the background is highlighted in a steely blue color. That steely blue is a flash of color to indicate that the azimuth changed values.

(G): Shows that the Moon will reach its highest point above the horizon at 5:50pm on Friday, which is later today as we speak. (In the Sun panel, it tells me that the Sun will set at 6:27pm, so that means the Moon and Mars will be ideally situated above the southwestern horizon about an hour after the Sun sets.

(H): Shows the current Phase and Illumination Percent. We are only a day or two away from First Quarter Moon.

There is a lot of information here that demands further explanation. I am working hard at developing a User's Guide but it is still in its infancy. When you are inside the app, there is an About link on the menu bar, click on it from time to time as I update its contents.

One further note: as I mentioned I use Chrome to run the app but you can use Firefox or IE. The important thing is to know which is your default browser. My default browser is Firefox, so that means that if I were to open an email and click on a link my operating system will launch Firefox, not Chrome. That is important since I have my Chrome browser resized in a special way that is not conducive to normal internet browsing. This is just something to be aware of.



HammerHarden uses JavaScript to mathematically model the motion of the Sun, Moon and Planets. Great care was taken to benchmark the calculations against an authoritative source: the Multiyear Interactive Computer Almanac (MICA) by the U.S. Naval Observatory. The formulae used in this application yield a good approximation of the exact position.


HammerHarden is fast and responsive. It runs entirely in your browser. There are no post-backs to the web server like conventional websites. HammerHarden is a Single Page Application (SPA) using AngularJS by Google. SPA gets its speed by loading the application's code just once. After that, every action you take happens entirely in the browser.


Click the launch link to run the app. You don't need an account, there are none, but it will use a cookie to make your experience more enjoyable. If you choose to block cookies, don't worry it will work well without them. Just know that if you create custom sites they will be lost when you close your browser.


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