Catalogue Distribution Policy
The following policy statement and statement of copyright
applies to the distribution of the printed
and electronic forms (including diskettes) of the
Catalogue of Cometary Orbits
Catalogue of High-Precision Orbits of Minor Planets
Catalogue of Orbits of Unnumbered Minor Planets
issued by the Central Bureau for Astronomical Telegrams
and Minor Planet Center (MPC)
, as well
as datasets obtained from the Computer
and Extended Computer Service
- Under no circumstances should catalogues be posted to Usenet
newsgroups or bulletin boards or made available on ftp sites.
- Extracts of orbital elements for individual objects may be posted
as long as the source of the information is clearly referenced.
- Catalogues are intended for personal (scientific) use only and
may not be redistributed.
- Inclusion of CBAT/MPC datasets in third-party collections (such as, but
not limited to, data sets supplied on diskette or CD-ROM with planetarium or sky-simulation
software) is not permitted.
- Inclusion of CBAT/MPC datasets in other collections is permitted only
for those intended for the sole use of the subscriber/purchaser.
The collections of orbital elements are copyrighted
, whereas the
individual orbital elements are not. This distinction is consistent
with the usual ruling that it is the form
of a publication that
is copyrightable, not the information actually contained in the
publication. The copyright is held by the Central Bureau for
Astronomical Telegrams and Minor Planet Center at the Smithsonian
Astrophysical Observatory on behalf of the International
We regret having to impose these restrictions on the redistribution
of our datasets, but there have been so many abuses and infringements
of copyright over the past few years that our funding situation
is now precarious and will continue to worsen if these steps are not taken.
In the past the catalogues have not carried copyright notices as an explicit
statement of copyright is not necessary. However, all future editions of
the catalogues (both printed and electronic) will contain such notices.