TOPCAT & STIL: Starlink Table/VOTable Processing Software

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle (Academic Journal)


The Starlink Tables Infrastructure Library (STIL) is a pure-Java, open source library for I/O and manipulation of tabular data such as astronomical catalogs. It is designed to be high-performance and tocope with large tables. The core library is format-neutral, with the work of serialization and deserialization performed by pluggable format-specific I/O handlers. This means that the programmer seees a high-level abstraction of a table which is easy to work with, and also that support for new data formats can be added easily. Supplied handlers provide support for VOTables, FITS table extensions, relational databases via SQL and plain text tables, amongst others. The VOTable handler is believed to be the only existing library capable of reading or writing all the defined VOTable encoding formats (tabledata, fits,binary).TOPCAT, based on STIL, is a user-friendly graphical program for viewing, analysis and editing of tables. It has facilities for plotting, crossmatching, row selection, sorting and manipulation of data and metadata. Synthetic columns can be created and row selections made using a powerful and extensible algebraic expression language.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)29
Number of pages4
JournalAstronomical Society of the Pacific Conference Series
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2005


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