fitting orbits to astrophotographers' behavior

In our clandestine activities of the weekend, we wrote down a generative model for how amateur astrophotographers point their telescopes. Here (above) are some parameters of that model, superimposed on a sky picture of the footprints of their images.


  1. What are the axes?

  2. I do not understand anything

  3. Amazing! Can almost feel the joy of making a plot like that! A quick question: the JPL path goes right through the little dark square above the 2008-02-01 label which makes sense since the person taking the shot of the comet centered the frame there. On the other hand, none of your paths seem to cross that region. Is there a way to force the model to get closer to that spot? It seems that this way the orbit would be spot on after the loop.