Simulating satellite constellations: alternatives to SaVi

SaVi requires a unix-like environment to run. SaVi and Geomview can be made to run under Microsoft Windows in a number of ways. If you desire a satellite constellation design package that runs natively in Windows, there's AVM Dynamics' Symmetric Constellations family. The last time I checked, the time-limited demonstration only showed rosettes, but it was fun to play with. Another Windows possibility is Taitus's SaVoir and satXLib. You may wish to also look at ESA's Space Trajectory Analysis Tool, NASA's GMAT General Mission Analysis Tool, FreeFlyer, Nova, Visualyse or the STK, whose add-on modules can provide three-dimensional visualisation. But those commercial packages are rather expensive, whereas SaVi and the Geomview rendering engine are completely free and open-source.

Geomview users may also wish to look at Crafter for modelling spacecraft.

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Lloyd Wood (
this page last updated 30 December 2009