IVOA Applications

Chair: Pierre Le Sidaner
Vice Chair: Adrian Damian

Applications Working Group Charter

The IVOA Applications Working Group is concerned primarily with the software tools that Astronomers use to access VO data and services for doing Astronomy.

The VO is enabling new ways of doing Astronomy. Interoperability between Astronomy data, services and software empowers astronomers to combine these for scientific discovery and analysis. VO Applications may take many forms such as GUI desktop applications, software libraries, web interfaces to services, or other innovative 'portals' to the VO. Legacy Astronomy software is becoming VO enabled and new and novel VO applications are being created. The IVOA Applications Working Group provides a means for VO Applications development and implementation to be closely linked to the standards development in the IVOA, and where necessary to propose and develop standards for VO Applications to interoperate.

The role of the Applications Working Group is to:

  • Provide a forum for announcement and discussion of VO Applications
  • Provide feedback to IVOA on the implementation of interoperability standards in VO applications
  • Identify missing or desirable technical capabilities for VO applications
  • Identify missing or desirable components in terms of scientific usability
  • Propose and develop standards specific to VO Astronomy-user-Applications


The Applications Working Group is overseen by a chair and deputy chair approved by the IVOA executive. The chairs organise the interop meeting sessions, and fulfil the normal responsibilities of a WG chair for publishing proposed recommendations.

Standards proposed for development within the Applications Working Group are to be considered within the wider context of the IVOA, and care should be taken to interface appropriately with other working groups. Development of Applications Working Group standards is ideally done by small teams. These teams are required to make a mission plan and to report regularly to the group.

Mailing lists

Applications Working Group discussion forum ( archive)
SAMP mailing list ( archive)

Standards Development

Standard Development and History Current Standard
SAMP: Simple Applications Messaging Protocol SampInfo SAMP 1.3
VOTable VOTableInfo VOTable 1.4
MOC: Multi-Order Coverage map MocInfo MOC 2.0
HiPS: Hierarchical Progressive Survey HiPS HiPS 1.0
License Details

Splinter Meetings

Interop Meetings

Applications sessions at Interop meeting will be organised for:

  • General discussion, announcement and demonstration of VO applications.
  • Technical development of interoperability standards for VO applications.
Sessions at previous and upcoming meetings, mostly with presentations attached, are listed here:


Applications (Please add new links by editing this page)

NVO Portal Services US National Virtual Observatory
DataScope Broadcast query
RVS Remote Visualization System
TOPCAT Tool for OPerations on Catalogues And Tables
STILTS Command-line tools for table/VOTable manipulation
CDS Aladin Image and Catalogue tool
CASSIS A tool to visualize and analyse VO compliant spectra through SSAP and VAMDC protocol
SPLAT Spectral Analysis Tool
SAADA Auto-Configurable Database Generator
Octet CVO Observation Catalog Exploration Tool
Debian Astro VO Applications in the Debian Astro Pure Blend
Autoplot Space Physics Data visualization tool

Lagacy Applications (Please add new links by editing this page)

VOPlot - VOIndia A plotting software tool for visualizing astronomical data input in various tabular formats (such as VOTable, FITS etc) last maintained 2013
Treeview A viewer for hierarchical structures last maintained 2003
ESA VOSpec A tool to handle VO compliant spectra through SSAP last maintained 2016
China VO VOFliter VOTable Filter for OpenOffice Calc last maintained 2005
VOTable2XHTML XSLT Stylesheet for VOTable to HTML last maintained 2005
VOStat - VOIndia A tool for statistical analysis of astronomical data last maintained 2008
VOConvert - VOIndia A tool for converting files from one format to another (ASCII to VOTable; FITS to VOTable; VOTable to ASCII) last maintained 2006
VOCat - VOIndia A catalog data interface tool last maintained 2007
Bell Labs Mirage Multi-dimensional visualization of data from VOTable  
VOSED A tool for building Spectral Energy distributions  
VODesktop A resource-centered desktop client for VO: includes VOExplorer, Query and Task Runner, Astroscope, Myspace Browser  
VisIVO A Visualisation Interface to the Virtual Observatory  
A list of Visualization Tools VOTech Project DS6 survey  
A Study On Existing Tools VOTech Project  
NOAO NVO Portal NOAO Image Visualization Discovery Tool  
VO-CLI Command-line Tools for the VO  
AR Commandline Python commandline VO tools  
Mosaic Service - VOIndia SDSS, 2MASS & HST FITS Image Mosaic Service  
Pymorph Service - VOIndia Web service for automated galaxy structural parameter estimation using PYTHON  
VOIndia Portal A portal with gadgets specially designed for Astronomers. Acts as a single point of entry for all VOIndia web services.  

Libraries and Parsers

JAVOT (CalTech) Java VOTable parser
SAVOT (CDS) Java VOTable parser
STIL Starlink Tables Infrastructure Library - Generic Java Table Handling for Astronomy
C++ Parser - VOIndia VOTable parser
VOTable Parser (Caltech/Spitzer Science Center) Java VOTable parser based XMLBeans
IDL VOlib Libraries for using VO services (requires IDL 6.+)
VORuby RUBY language libraries for using VO Services
FITS IO Libraries Collection of FITS libraries
uws-client A Python command line tool for interacting with uws-services (create, start, list, delete jobs)

Protocols and Formats

IVOA Standards Documents

Project Notes

Historical Interest



AIG report to IVOA Executive committee V0.1 ( .doc) May 2004
Table 2 for AIG Report ( .xls) May 2004
Querying heterogeneous datasets with Saada ( .ppt) May 2006
Saada demo presented at BEIJING ( .ppt) May 2007
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