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Autopilot

Autopilot control

The Autopilot is used to automatically fly to a selected object. To activate the autopilot, select the object and press the [G] key. This starts a slow, smooth flight to the target object. The camera will automatically rotate to center the object on screen during the flight. Once at the target object, braking will be applied before finally stopping within a certain distance from it. Pressing [G] twice quickly leads to a faster trip to the destination object.

To land on the surface of a selected planet or star, press [Shift]+[G] for a fast landing, or press [Ctrl]+[G] for a slow landing. Once the camera has landed, the orientation of the camera will change so that it looks out to the planet's horizon. To launch back into space slowly, press [G]; press [G] twice to take-off faster.

For a galaxy, star cluster, or nebula, pressing [Shift]+[G] will provide a quick flight to them and arrive within a certain distance of the object's center. Pressing [Ctrl]+[G] to fly slowly to the center of an object; press it again to fly faster. For galaxies and globular clusters, the camera will arrive at the object's central black hole.

Autopilot commands are also available in the context menu and in the lower-left control panel.

The canceling of autopilot flight is done by pressing Esc.

By default, speed auto-tuning mode is used. The optimal speed of the camera is set automatically, depending on an object's size. In other words, once you arrive at your destination, your camera is set for the optimum speed relative to the object you traveled to. For example, during a flight to a galaxy, the speed of the camera is automatically set to a few kiloparsecs per second, while during a flight to a planet, it is set to a few thousand kilometers per second. To toggle the speed auto-tuning mode, go to the Camera controls page in the Controls menu and bind a key to Auto velocity, then use that key to toggle the feature.

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Autopilot journal

Each time autopilot is used, the name of the selected object is written into the Autopilot journal. The Autopilot journal dialog can be opened by pressing the [Tab] key, or by clicking the notepad icon labeled "Journey log" on the left control panel. The Journey log dialog box lists the names and descriptions of all objects recently visited, with the most recent objects at the bottom. Left-clicking on a row will select the object. The right side section of the dialog box displays information about the object and the time it was visited (the program and system time). Pressing [Go to] will close the dialog window and activate a quick trip flight to the selected object, and the object will be automatically added to the end of the journal. Pressing the [Cancel] button will close the journal.

The autopilot journal is saved in config/journal.cfg as a text file. By default, the length of the journal is limited to 100 entries, but its length can be changed in the main configuration file config/main.cfg.

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