Conditions of Usage

Statement of Intellectual Property Rights

The USNO astrometric reference catalogs contains data from a diverse collection of photographs, reductions, and catalogs. A large number of different organizations claim copyright and/or intellectual property rights on the various components. Although the details differ, all permissions for usage of data are contingent on unrestricted access. Distribution and/or other direct costs can be recovered, but re-packaging, re-formatting, or similar activities, especially for commercial purposes, are not permitted except as authorized by the U. S. Naval Observatory in consultation with the other institutions listed below and as appropriate.

  1. Palomar Observatory, National Geographic Society, and California Institute of Technology own Palomar Observatory Sky Surveys I and II.
  2. European Southern Observatory owns the ESO-R survey.
  3. The UK Particle Physics and Astronomy Research Council (formerly Science and Enginerering Research Council and before that Science Research Council) owns the SERC-J survey.
  4. Space Telescope Science Institute (and AURA and NASA) own the Guide Star Catalog.
  5. US Naval Observatory owns the digitization of the plates and the object parameters and catalogs made from them.

In particular, we reserve the rights to compile and distribute zone catalogs, summary catalogs, or other significant pieces of USNO-A beyond that which is needed to support personal or institutional scientific or educational projects. Included in this is the preparation and distribution of images generated from the USNO-A catalog beyond those needed for finding charts and similar purposes. In summary, you are welcome to use the catalog, but significant redistribution, extraction, and image rights are reserved, and permission needs to be obtained before using this catalog for such purposes.

Request for Citations

It is an unfortunate aspect of modern funding that impersonal and statistical measures are used to assess the productivity and usefulness of programs. If you benefited from using USNO-A, we ask that you give the catalog a citation. By doing so, we may be able to justify the expense of continued production of catalogs. Whenever possible, it would be appropriate to note which survey (POSS-I, ESO, and/or SRC) supplied the relevant data, since these surveys are measured, in part, by the extent to which they serve the community.

Dave Monet
US Naval Observatory Flagstaff Station
PO Box 1149 (U.S. Mail)
West Highway 66 (FedEx, UPS, etc.)
Flagstaff, Arizona 86002

Voice: 520-779-5132
FAX: 520-774-3626

© Lowell Observatory 2008
Contacts: Ted Bowell and Bruce Koehn
Last modified: 2008 April 15