Virtual Moon Atlas
(V. M. A.)

Now downloaded by more than 300 000 astronomers worldwide
and used in several books, magazines, observatories and Web sites
and recommanded by the European Space Agency (ESA).

French version
French Version

Spanish Version

Russian Version

Italian version
Italian version

Portugues version

  SourceForge Logo

Sponsors Astrosurf

Free software for Moon observation or survey
For Windows 95/98/NT//ME/2000/XP/Vista

November 6 2006





More powerful : the database manager allows you to localize on the map, the formations that you selected in it. In the exemple above, you choosed and vsualised the "domes" present in the databases.


More beautiful : pictures from "Apollo Mapping" and "Best of Amateurs" libraries will amaze you.
Left : Theophilus by Apollo 16. Right : Plato by Wes Higgins.


From left to right :
Near side with libration
Eyepiece view simulation of Cleomedes
Farside altitude showing South Pole - Atkin basin
Orbiting above Copernicus

News :

February 10, 2007 You are using Windows Vista?

Please look at the page Installation on Windows Vista


November 6, 2006 Version 3.5

We are happy to present you the new "Pro" version 3.5, last evolution of the Virtual Moon Atlas :

Warning! this new version is ressource intensive and require a powerful computer to use all the function. (a 2GHz processor, 512MB RAM , a graphic card with 64MB RAM and OpenGL support)


The database manager "DATLUN" :
EXCLUSIVE : Patrick Chevalley has programmed "DATLUN", a database manager that allows you to select on several criterias, the formations that interest specially you. Featuring a "basic" and an "advanced" mode, explained by an illustrated user's manual, with it you will be able to visualize on the map, for example, all the lunar rilles more than 20 km long, or all the craters with flat floor !

"Historical sites" :
To thank European Space Agency (ESA) for its support to VMA, datas about europeanprobe SMART-1 impact on the Moon have been added in the "Historical sites" database.

The new "Apollo Mapping Cameras" pictures library :
The Lunar and Planetary Institute authorized Christian Legrand to extract from the "Apollo Mapping Cameras" pictures put online by the Lunar and Planetary Institute, individual formations pictures and include them in the VMA pictures libraries. These pictures are the more detailed ever obtained from some formations ! With its near 700 pictures, this new unique library can be accessed through the "Configuration / Image" menu as the olders.

The new "Best of Amateurs" pictures library :
Some of the best world lunar imagers have kindly accepted some of their pictures to be included in a special library dedicated to VMA. Compiled by Christian Legrand, this new pictures library contains presently about 400 pictures from Craig Zerbe, Mike Wirths, Wes Higgins, Zac Pujic and Paolo Lazzarotti. Other amateurs will come to add their owns in this library whose pictures are very superior to those of the CLA and sometimes are as good as those of some lunar probes !

Adding these two new libraries permit to VMA users to look at more than 6 000 lunar formations pictures.

The DATLUN documentation :
Christian Legrand has written a new specific documentation for the database manager "DATLUN" with new screen pictures showing the new possibilities.

The VMA "Pro" version 3.5 CD-Rom :
To make this new "Pro" version available for those who don't have wide band dowload possibilities (About 300 Mb with textures and overlays), and even more with the pictures libraries (About 500 Mb), we have realized a CD-Rom including the complete "Pro" version 3.5..

On this basis, Patrick Chevalley has conceived a CD-Rom with an install device for the complete VMA "Pro" version 3.5 (VMA, DATLUN, databases, textures, overlays, LOPAM, Apollo, Probes, "Apollo Mapping" and LAC/LM pictures libraries). Calculate between your needed download time and a backup CD price to see if the CD-Rom purchase is valuable for you or not.

The CD-Rom visuals have been improved compared to the precedent one.

This CD-Rom is available with an E-Mail request and payment by PAYPAL. Its price is 20 € taking account of realization costs and air mail charges. Go to the "How to order the CD-Rom" page for more details.

How to support our action ? :

We had generous offers from some VMA users that asked us how they could help us for the software improvement. This one is sure a free action of ourselves and we don't ask any financial help for this product which is only the reflect of our astronomical passions : Moon survey for Christian Legrand and astronomical programming for Patrick Chevalley..

We were a little embarassed by these proposals, but we estimated that we can't refuse voluntary donations and finally decided to accept them. If you want to help us, go to the page "How to support our action ?" for more details. So that the benefits of your support come back to you, these funds will be affected, as far as we can do it, to the purchase of astronomical equipment or books usable for the improvement of VMA or for other astronomical new products or actions.

We thank you very much in advance for the voluntary help that you would decide to bring us.

Christian Legrand et Patrick Chevalley

This software, realized by Patrick Chevalley and Christian Legrand can visualize the Moon aspect for every date and hour and pilot computerized telescopes on the Moon surface. It permits also to study lunar formations with unique database and pictures library compiled by Christian Legrand.

It's conceived to be easily usable "in the field" according to an observing session needs, but also to study "at home" the Moon and its relief. It's interfaced with "Sky charts" Patrick Chevalley's freeware. This set is certainly now one of the most complete released

Rather than a long description, we invite you to read the complete manual or the quick user's guide or to look at the screens copies to see what are the possibilities.

The authors are decided to upgrade periodically the software, database and pictures library in the following monthes and years. If you think that a function would be useful for all Moon observers, don't hesitate to indicate it us. It could be possible to include it.

It's possible to choose the language used by the software and database. presently English and French version are available with the basic package. You can download more translation here .

The authors wish that others passioned amateur astronomers will propose their own translation in their language to make this software available to world wide Moon observers.

Why is it free ?

This software is the result of a collaboration between Christian Legrand, a passioned lunar observer, co-author of the guide "Discover the Moon" published in English by Cambridge University Press and also published in French, German and Spanish, and Patrick Chevalley, author of the worlwide known freeware "Cartes du Ciel / Sky Charts".

The authors make him free for amateur astronomers, lunar observers and students who wish to practice selenography. They hope to promote Moon observation and knowledge because our satellite will become one of the next human spatial exploration step.

Using conditions

The "Virtual Moon Atlas" is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License. This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

Database information and picture are copyrighted and cannot be used outside of the software without the author's permission.


Source code is available from CVS at

This program is entirely written in DELPHI 6.

Calculations of the ephemerides of the Moon are based on " Lunar Solution ELP 2000-82B Chapront-Touze, Bureau des Longitudes 1988". The program elp82b.f was rewritten in Pascal and include in a DLL.

Many calculations are based on the essential "Astronomical Algorithms by Jean Meeus".

OpenGL display use GLScene .

The database is managed with SQLite and Libsql.

Visitor from June 2002

If you have any questions, suggestions or remarks about the software, you can contact Patrick Chevalley. If they are about the overlays, the databases or the pictures libraries, please contact Christian Legrand.

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