RiseSet Program for the Palm OS
Version 2.1*


RiseSet is an application for the Palm OS to compute the rise, transit and set times for the Sun and the Moon.
Any user location and date (within the limits of the Palm) may be specified. The application stores three locations for travelers, and has the ability to import location information from the GeoDB database.

RiseSet has good accuracy for visual sighting. The actual Sun times should be within a few seconds of the time shown. The Moon times are given to the second, but the actual time could be ± a minute. Studies indicate that in general the Moon times given are about 22 seconds late.
Be aware that visual sighting times can vary because of atmospheric aberration.

RiseSet also gives:

What's new in Version 2.1

About This Documentation

RiseSet is intuitive and easy to use. This documentation probably seems large, but you really should read it to fully understand all of the features. For a Quick Start read Installation. Then after trying it out please return to this documentation to learn all of the features.


If you are upgrading from RiseSet V2.0 simply install risest21.prc.
Otherwise installation of this version of RiseSet is quite different than previous versions 1.x.
This installation needs to be considered carefully if you wish to take full advantage of all of RiseSet features.
Please read the various installations discussions carefully. Especially if you have a previous version of RiseSet and/or GeomageticInfo installed in your Palm.
This archive file includes:
The executable file.
The required Sun/Moon function library.
The required mathematics library -- V1.1.
Many thanks to Rick Huebner, the author of MathLib, for his excellent routines and making them freely available.
This documentation file.
RSMenu1.gif, RSMenu2.gif, RSMenu3.gif, RSMoon.gif, RSSun.gif, RSMoonCompass.gif, RSSunCompass.gif, RSClock.gif, RSSunMag.gif
Images for riseset.html
The optional geomagnetic library.
A required database if optional gmillib.prc is installed.

Detailed Installation Instructions

Use your desktop Pilot installer to install risest21.prc and the associated files.
Note: You install only files whose extensions are: .prc and .pdb. The other files of this archive are associated with this documentation.

If you already have RiseSet 2.0 installed:

 Install RiseSet without
Magnetic Compass Correction
Install RiseSet with
Magnetic Compass Correction
Step 1 Install: risest21.prc Install: risest21.prc

If you do not have RiseSet 2.0 installed:

 Install RiseSet without
Magnetic Compass Correction
Install RiseSet with
Magnetic Compass Correction
Step 1 If you have RiseSet Version 1.0 or 1.1 delete RiseSet from your Palm. If you have Version 1.2 or 1.3 you need not delete it. If you have RiseSet Version 1.0 or 1.1 delete RiseSet from your Palm. If you have Version 1.2 or 1.3 you need not delete it.
Step 2
Using Palm Desktop install:
  • risest21.prc
  • sunmoonlib.prc
  • MathLib.prc, if not already installed, or you wish to upgrade to V1.1
  • Using Palm Desktop install:
  • risest21.prc
  • sunmoonlib.prc
  • gmillib.prc
  • wmm-2000.pdb
  • MathLib.prc, if not already installed, or you wish to upgrade to V1.1
  • Step 3 Read all of this documentation. You wouldn't want to miss something. It will tell you how to find your latitude and longitude, your GMT Offset, and how to use the magnetic compass correction (if installed -- be sure to read About Geomagnetic Databases).

    Special Note to Users of GeomagneticInfo
    If you have GeomagneticInfo installed in your Palm, a new version of GeomagmeticInfo is available (V1.2).
    The new version allows the location to be imported from GeoDB, and uses the new gmillib.prc. Thus if you have installed gmillib.prc for use with RiseSet, you can also use it with GeomagneticInfo and save about 25K of space in your Palm.
    To install the new version geomag12.prc, get geomag12.zip at: http://www.40-below.com/palm and install only geomag12.prc. Version 1.0 or V1.1 will be replaced by V1.2.

    Using RiseSet

    Hopefully the application output is self explanatory. Six terms used are: To save display space the names of the Moon phases are abbreviated to: 'New' for New Moon, 'FirstQtr' for First Quarter, 'Full' for Full Moon, 'LastQtr' for Last Quarter. The date of the event is shown as the day and first three letters of the month name.
    Eclipse data is given for the best possible location on earth. See About Eclipses below.

    When getting times at latitudes near the poles, it is possible that the Sun/Moon does not rise or set. In that case the time output will be displayed as: 0:00:00. It is also possible that the rise time occurs on the previous day, or the set time occurs on the next day. V1.3 and V2.0, V2.1 improve this display over previous versions.

    All menus are accessed by pressing the menu icon at the bottom left of the Graffiti writing area. In addition the select menu can be accessed by pressing the current location name in the title bar, and the time menu by pressing the time in the title bar.

    The menus are:

    This menu allows you to specify the active location.
    The input for latitude and longitude may be in any of the following formats:
    1. Degrees -- e.g. 44.6427
    2. Degrees:Minutes -- e.g. 44:38.562
    3. Degrees:Minutes:Seconds -- e.g. 44:38:33.72
      The only allowable input characters are: digit, '.' and ':'. That is, digit, period, and colon.
      Should you forget this, tap the i in the upper right of this dialog box.

      Be sure to set the correct direction for the location -- West, East, North or South using the pop-up selection list to the right. The pop-up selector lists choices are only East or West, or North or South.

    The input for the GMT Offset normally will be whole numbers. E.g. 5, 10, etc. indicating the correct time zone for the location. The East coast of the US is 5 West, central Europe is 1 East. If daylight time (sometimes called summer time) is in effect at the location, check the Daylight Time box.
    Be sure to select East or West of Greenwich using thep pop-up selection list to the right.

    If you do not know your Latitude and Longitude use this world-wide location server, or USA only location server.
    Use this to find your GMT Offset.
    This menu is used to select the active location. You should change the names of the locations as desired. Then select the one you wish to be active.

    This menu imports the currently selected location from the GeoDB database into any of the three RiseSet's locations. When you import you will be asked which of the three locations the imported location should replace. Also there is a checkbox to make it the default, that is selected it as if you used the 'Select' menu.

    If you don't have GeoDB it is available at: http://www.40-below.com/palm/. It is a small application and the installation is simple.

    This menu allows you to set the time for which the Sun/Moon is calculated. The standard Palm Time dialog box is used for this setting. Only the Start Time is used by RiseSet. To return to current time calculation, set the No Time box.

    The compass menu displays a compass drawing of the current azimuth and elevation for the Sun or the Moon. The displays differs for the two bodies in that the Moon display shows the percentage illumination of Moon disk.
    The Azimuth angle is shown with a heavy solid line, while the Altitude is shown dotted.
    In this example the Sun Azimuth is 175° and the Altitude is 30°.
    The Moon Azimuth is at 70°, and the Altitude is just above the horizon at 2°.

    Note: The azimuth angle is always the actual line-of-sight angle even if magenetic correction is on.

    Mag. Corr. On (Off or N/A)
    Refer to the screen at the right. You will note that there is an additional azimuth angle shown in '( )'. This is the magnetic compass angle to the Sun/Moon.
    The magnetic compass Azimuth angle can be displayed by tapping this menu (Mag. Corr. On), and then tapping the Sun/Moon name to recompute and display the data.
    The Azimuth angle on the left will be the line-of-sight angle, and the angle to the right in '()' will be the magnetic compass angle pointing to the Sun/Moon.
    Re-displaying the menu will show 'Mag. Corr. Off'. That allows this computation to be disabled.

    Note: This is an optional computation and will only be performed if the gmillib.prc, and its associated wmm-2000.pdb database, is installed in your Palm.

    (See Detailed Installation above.)

    Palm Clock
    This menu item displays a dialog box in which you must check one of these two boxes so that RiseSet will know if your Palm Clock is, or is not, set for Daylight Time (also called Summer Time).
    If this menu is not set correctly the angles to Sun/Moon will not be correct.
    This menu displays a small subset of the information on this page.
    This menu tells about RiseSet.

    More Details

    Finding the Azimuth angle at Sun/Moon Rise/Set

    To find the azimuth angle at which the Sun (or Moon) will rise (or set).
    1. Find the desired time. Then tap the time in the title bar (or tap the Time in the Commands menu).
    2. Set the nearest time to the rise (or set) time.
    3. When "Done" is tapped the re-computed data will show the azimuth angle at rise (or set).
      If Mag. Corr. is ON the magnetic compass angle will also be displayed.
    To return to real time enter the time menu again and tap "No Time" and then "Done".

    About Eclipses

    When you check the Moon rise/set times, eclipse data is given a few days before an eclipse is to occur.
    This information is for the best possible location on earth. Unfortunately there is not enough room in a Palm to give more information for your location.
    To see if you will have a chance to see it, use the Time menu and set it to the time of the eclipse. For a lunar eclipse check the Moon again. For a solar eclipse check the Sun.
    If the eclipsed body is above the horizon (i.e. the altitude is positive) then it is possible that you can see it.
    You can usually find all of the details of an eclipse at: http://www.skypub.com/.

    Back to Using RiseSet

    About Geomagenetic Databases

    Supplied with this RiseSet archive is one geomagnetic database: wmm-2000.pdb. There are 5 different geomagnetic databases, called models, available. The wmm-2000.pdb and igrf-2000.pdb are World Magnetic Models -- i.e. have reasonable accuracy world wide.
    Models us-2000.pdb, ak-2000.pdb and hi-2000.pdb are Regional Models for the United States, Alaska, and Hawaii respectively.

    If at a future date you wish to use a model other than the one currently installed, simply install a new .pdb model into your Palm with your Palm installer. The previously installed model will be deleted automatically. RiseSet can use only one model at a time.
    The additional models are available in the Geomagnetic Info archive.
    For more information about the Geomagnetic Info application click here.
    You can read more about these models in its documentation: geomaginfo.html.

    Back to Using RiseSet

    Contact Information

    RiseSet was created by David W. Bray, Potsdam, NY;
    Copyright © 1999-2004 David W. Bray, All Rights Reserved.

    An interactive version of RiseSet can be found at: http://www.40-below.com/sunmoon/

    The Bray Palm OS Page can be found at: http://www.40-below.com/palm/


    RiseSet is freeware no registration is required. We hope you enjoy using it.

    This archive may be freely redistributed, provided it is made available only in its complete, unmodified form with no additional files and for noncommercial purposes only. Any other use must have prior written authorization from David W. Bray.

    Unauthorized commercial use includes, but is not limited to:


    This application is provided without warranty and the user accepts full responsibility for any damages, consequential or otherwise, resulting from its use.

    Foot Notes

    GMT Offset is the number of hours a location's local clocks differ from that of Greenwich Observatory in England. Here is a sampling of GMT Offsets. For other locations most atlases have a time zone chart.

    United StatesAround the World
    Time ZonesOffsetTime ZonesOffset
    Eastern 5 West British Isles 0 East
    Central 6 West Western Europe 1 East
    Mountain 7 West Eastern Europe 2 East
    Pacific 8 West So. Africa 2 East
    Alaska 9 West Russia 3 East
    Hawaii 10 West Japan 9 East
    Eastern Australia 10 East

    Back to Location Menu

    *Changes in Version 2.1

    RiseSet Version 2.1 differs from Version 1.0 in:
    1. The length of the day was added to Sun information display. (V1.1)
    2. A DayLight Savings checkbox was added. Using the GMT Offset to compensate for daylight savings introduces a small error in the rise/set times. Since the accuracy of RiseSet is high a DayLight Savings checkbox is better and more convenient. (V1.1)
    3. A menu was added to tell RiseSet that the Palm clock is (or is not) set to Daylight Savings time, to give correct real-time altitude/azimuth. (V1.2)
    4. Better display formatting provides an easier to read screen. (V1.2)
    5. The date box shows the date in the format selected by the user in the system/prefs/formats. (V1.2a)
    6. The date of the next lunar phase is in a more universal date format. (V1.2a)
    7. The time and select menus can be accessed via the title bar time and location name respectively. (V1.2a)
    8. A reminder message was added to the Location menu about the clock DayLight Time configuration. (V1.3)
    9. Latitudes near the poles show more time values, rather than 0:00. (V1.3)
    10. The lunar phase and eclipse times are correct for both standard and daylight time. (V1.3)
    11. The location database is backed up when synchronized. (V1.3)
    12. The time of the civil, nautical, and astronomical twilight. (V2.0)
    13. Improved Moon phase time accuracy. (V2.0)
    14. The current percent visibility of the Moon. (V2.0)
    15. A compass drawing showing the azimuth and altitude angles of the Sun/Moon. (V2.0)
    16. Magnetic compass reading for the Sun/Moon azimuth angle. (V2.0)
    17. A menu item 'Import' is added to allow importation of data from GeoDB. (V2.1 Bld:249)
    18. The location menu changed to be similar to GeoDB with pop-up choices. (V2.1 Bld:249)
    19. Bug in Palm TxtCharIsDigit() - replaced by local routine. (V2.1 Bld:303)
    20. Changes to improve OS4 compatibility (V2.1 Bld:316)
    A Bld: (build) has been added to the version number in the 'About' box. To be sure that your version is up-to-date check the Bld: number in the description of RiseSet at:

    The original release of RiseSet V2.1 is Bld:249.
    The current Bld: is 316.