Project Summary

This project is an extension of Orbitorbs v1.0.  I translated the code that I wrote in processing into Openframeworks, a C++ based programming language.  I added additional features that enabled more user control over the planetary system including:

  • The ability to pause the solar system simulation and edit planet parameters
  • A more intuitive interaction for editing planet parameters
  • The ability to turn on and off a function that links the computer microphone volume input to the strength of the gravitational constant dictating the force between the planets (activate by pressing the ‘e’ key and deactivate by pressing the ‘s’ key). The higher the volume, the higher the g-constant (directly proportional).

The algorithm uses 2-dimensional matrices to store the x and y parameters of the various planets and it implements Newton’s Law of Universal Gravitation:


This project has the potential to be adapted into a new type of learning tool, allowing for a more fun and interactive method for teaching basic principles of physics including angular acceleration, gravitation, ideas of mass and density, and more.

Orbitorbs v2.1 (openframeworks) from Conor Russomanno on Vimeo.

The Code

If you want to play with this application or examine the code, please feel free to grab it from my github.