Sloan Digital Sky Survey
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Cooking with Sloan

These guides are a series of "recipes" for using Sloan Digital Sky Survey data to accomplish common tasks in astronomy. You will learn how to accomplish these tasks using the same tools that professional astronomers use.

Each guide is organized around questions of "How do I...", such as "How do I get an image and spectrum of my favorite object? The guide for each task will take you step-by-step through how to accomplish that task, using different tools of the SkyServer web site.

We encourage you to open the tools from the links provided in the guides and follow along as you read. Each guide also has a printable version - click on the Flash or PDF icon on the first page of the guide.

Click on one of the categories below to see the guides. Bon appetit!

General tasks Solar System Stars
Galaxies Quasars/Cosmology Teaching/Labs


Category Description Guides: How do I...
General tasks Tasks that are important in all areas of astronomy
  • Get an image and spectrum of my favorite object?
  • Find out if SDSS's imaging data for an object are reliable?
  • Find data for all objects in a given RA/Dec/Magnitude/Absolute Magnitude range?
  • Find images and spectra for all objects in a given RA/Dec/Magnitude/Absolute Magnitude range?
  • Upload my own data to see what the SDSS knows about those objects?
  • Get a random subset of the data?
  • Find closely paired objects?
  • Create a finding chart for my telescope?
Solar System Tasks that are useful to Solar System research
  • Find moving objects consistent with asteroids?
Stars Tasks that are useful to stellar research
  • Find stars that have been seen more than once?
  • Find star spectra from the SDSS’s SEGUE survey?
  • Find cataclysmic variables?
Galaxies Tasks that are useful to galactic research
  • Find optical data for 2MASS galaxies?
Tasks that are useful to research into quasars and cosmology
  • Find data for quasars?
Tasks that are useful for teaching and developing lab activities
  • Create a Hubble Diagram to show the expanding universe?