XCATSCAN -- A Catalog Scanning Tool

XCATSCAN is an interactive software tool for scanning Infrared Astronomical Satellite (IRAS) databases and other catalogs, and extracting parameters for sources which meet specified criteria. The point-and-click user interface is available for remote access over the Internet from computers running X/Windows, and it is designed especially for scientists who wish to make queries of IRAS databases in conjunction with other major astronomical catalogs. Catalogs may be queried by specifying location on the sky (position and search radius, coordinate ``boxes,'' or IRAS source name), constraints on data fields (e.g., fnu_60 > 10.5), and positional associations between IRAS sources and objects in other catalogs. Catalog columns may be easily queried by filling in a table, or by direct entry of constraints in Structured Query Language (SQL). The results may be saved as ASCII or FITS tables and transferred via FTP to your computer for analysis.

New features include the ability to upload coordinate lists (private catalogs) via anonymous FTP and scan the on-line catalogs for positional matches, improvements to the user interface, and availability of the Infrared Space Observatory (ISO) Guaranteed Time Observers (GTO) Targets List, the third addition of the Catalog of Infrared Observations (CIO) (Gezari, Schmitz, & Mead 1993), and the Catalog of Positions and Proper Motions (PPM).

Access Instructions

You will need a computer that runs X-Windows (such as Motif, Open Windows, DEC Windows, or other X11-compatible window system, but not SunView).

The Workstation must be connected directly to the INTERNET.

Connect to IPAC with the command:

  • telnet://xcatscan.ipac.caltech.edu/
  • After you answer a few questions, the main XCATSCAN menu will appear on your screen. The interface is self-documenting, and will guide you through your query, with the use of help buttons.

    If you have any questions, please send email to


    Last updated 24-May-1994