2016 AAS WorldWide Telescope Competition


Want to share astronomy by making a tour, interactive experience, or video using WorldWide Telescope? You should — and then you should enter it in the American Astronomical Society’s first WorldWide Telescope Competition!


WWT for Planet Nine

Visualization of Planet Nine’s hypothesized orbit, created using WWT as part of an article abstract. [WWT]

The AAS is hosting its first-ever competition for products created using WorldWide Telescope (WWT)! Since WWT joined the AAS family, we’ve seen it used for some great science communication by authors submitting video abstracts for their research articles (like this one), as well as some spectacular examples of interactive web-based experiences and awesome tours introducing people to astronomy concepts (like this one). We’d love to see what else people can come up with!

Entries are now being accepted in any of three categories: research, education, or planetarium.

In addition, there will be a special prize for the top WWT tour on information or safety on the upcoming 2017 solar eclipse.

WWT for planetariums

WWT can be used to produce planetarium shows as well! [WWT]


The competition is open to everyone: professional astronomers, students, and enthusiasts alike, with no age or nationality restrictions.


The deadline for entry is 5:00 pm on Friday, 16 December 2016. Winners will be notified by 31 December and recognized at the 229th AAS meeting (3–7 January 2017).


  1. To win prizes!
    There are prizes for the top three entries in each of the three categories, including Amazon gift cards, telescopes, and iPad minis, and there’s an additional prize for the top 2017 solar eclipse entry. There’s also an overall Grand Prize of an advanced goto mount and refractor telescope generously provided by Explore Scientific.
  2. To create an awesome education tool
    By using WWT to create a tour, interactive experience, or video, you’ll have a great visualization you can use to share your research or interesting astronomy at future conferences, talks, or outreach events. Winning entries will also gain broad additional exposure via the AAS — we can’t wait to share your products with our members and the public, in order to spread enthusiasm for astronomy and awe of our universe.


WWT Milky Way tour

An example of a WWT tour of the Milky Way. [WWT]

Already have a finished product you want to enter? Find out how to submit it here.

Don’t have a product yet, but have a plan and already know how to use WWT? If you have a Windows computer, you can download and install WWT here. Alternatively, go here to use WWT right in your web browser to create a tour!

No idea how to use WWT but want to try? You can check out this post for a few ideas, or tune in to upcoming live, online training workshops (and re-watch past ones). You can also go here for more information on using WWT.

Any final questions? Check out the official announcement for the 2016 AAS WorldWide Telescope Competition here. Happy creating!