What is Mitaka?
Mitaka is software for visualizing the known Universe with up-to-date observational data and theoretical models, developed by the Four-Dimensional Digital Universe (4D2U) project of the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ).
Mitaka has two modes: space mode and planetarium mode.
In space mode you can explore various structures in the universe ranging from the topography of the Earth to the large-scale structure of the Universe. Mitaka seamlessly integrates up-to-date observational data and theoretical models. Mitaka users can seamlessly navigate through space, from the Earth to the edges of the known Universe.
When "landed" on the surface of a planet, Mitaka is in planetarium mode.
In this mode, Mitaka can display the sky as seen from a particular location. ... More Info »
There is also a version compatible with a head-mounted display (HMD) for virtual reality (VR) called Mitaka for VR
4D2U has been supported by the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan (NAOJ) and other collaborating organizations including, Research and Development for Applying Advanced Computational Science and Technology (ACT-JST) ["Establishment and Application of Four-Dimensional Digital Space Data (led by Norio Kaifu, 2001 to 2004)"], as well as the Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology [Effective Promotion Program for Industry-Academia-Government Collaborative Research supported by Special Coordination Funds for Promoting Science and Technology – "Establishment of Distribution System for Four-Dimensional Digital Video of the Universe (led by Shoken Miyama, 2004 to 2007)"].
Tsunehiko Kato (member of the NAOJ 4D2U Group) designed and developed the Mitaka software, including its algorithms for image rendering, data processing, and its Japanese manual. Sorahiko Nukatani (cooperative engineer from RIKEN) worked on the aesthetic design, including title design and color tables.