Support

If you need support for TPE, please check the appropriate section of this page in the first instance.

Got a general question? Please see our FAQ first.

If you can' find the answer to your problem, you can send us an email at support@photoephemeris.com, and we'll get back to you to work through your issue.

Support for:

Help and Tutorials

We have a section of the site dedicated to tutorials showing how to get the most out of TPE. Please visit Tutorials.

We also have a Quick Start Guide available for the TPE for Desktop Web App:


A 2-page PDF quick start guide to using the TPE for Desktop web app.
File size 272.88kB | Last modified Fri Aug 15, 2014 at 16:35 | Download count 7390


Support for TPE for iOS

If you have any issues with TPE for iOS, please e-mail support@photoephemeris.com with details. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

App Help


You can download the app help page as a PDF here:


File size 269.22kB | Last modified Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 15:27 | Download count 854


File size 278.33kB | Last modified Tue Sep 17, 2013 at 15:27 | Download count 910

Known issues

The Search function in TPE for iOS 2.5.1 or earlier (e.g. search for a place name, such as ‘New York’) may not work as of Sep 10 2013. This is due to a legacy web service being turned down.

This is fixed in the 2.5.2 update.

Moon Illumination

Moon illumination is shown only for midnight UTC for the selected date, rather than in the local time zone.

Hints and tips

Current location information

By default, TPE for iOS will display your current location, if you give the app permission to use location data from your device. On iPod Touch, location will be established using your WiFi connection, if available. On iPhone, the built-in GPS chip is used. TPE tries to get a location accurate to within 100m/328ft. When using the “Go to current location” button, the button will remain depressed until a sufficiently accurate location is found and then it will auto-reset (unless you reset it first, or you move the map position manually). TPE isn’t designed to calculate sun and moon position on the fly as you’re driving along in a car – there’s too much involved, plus the data would hardly change all the while it used up your battery power.

Can I drag the map marker?

Yes. Tap and hold the marker for a moment before dragging. The iOS needs a moment to work out if you’re intending to drag the map underneath the map marker or the map itself. Remember, the cross-hairs at the base of the marker (which appear while dragging), show you precisely where the pin will drop when released.

Offline use

TPE for iOS supports offline use. To get the most out of the app when offline, you should follow a few guidelines:

  • Save the locations you will need to use. This ensures that TPE has stored the timezone and elevation above sea level (these are required to provide the most accurate data).
  • Select one of the offline map options (OpenCycleMap Topographic, MapQuest OpenStreetMap, or MapQuest OpenAerial) in the settings page within TPE
  • Pan and zoom the map to cover the areas you will need to view when offline. Doing this will save the map tiles to your device for use when offline. (You should ensure that the Offline Store on the TPE settings page is enabled before doing this.)

If you are offline and didn’t view the required maps areas in advance, it’s possible the map image tiles will still be in your device’s local cache, but you can’t rely on it. Use one of the offline map types, and view the map tiles you need in advance, for reliable map access when offline.

TPE will look up the local time zone for wherever you are looking on the planet, so you don’t have to second guess. However, it needs an internet connection to do that. If there isn’t one available, you will be prompted to specify a time zone manually.

Finally, TPE also looks up elevation above sea level for both primary (red) and secondary (grey) map marker locations. Elevation above sea level affects the actual time of rise/set and apparent position of the sun/moon in the sky, due to atmospheric refraction. If there’s no internet connection, TPE will assume that the location is at sea level (which is what very many sunrise/set calculators do all the time), and the data will be very slightly less accurate as a result.

For the secondary map marker, knowing the elevation above sea level is essential – this is how you determine the angle of elevation to a nearby mountain-top, for example. With no internet connection, the geodetics information cannot be determined.


Support for TPE for Android

Missing azimuth lines in Android 4.0

If the azimuth lines on the map disappear when beyond a certain zoom level, when running under Android 4.0, please update to version 1.1. Alternatively, if you are on 1.0.5 or below, check that the “Force CPU rendering” setting, found under Settings/Developer options, is unchecked. Checking this option causes drawing issues with TPE’s map overlays (as well with other apps) in versions up to 1.0.5.

Error on searching for place name

If you receive an error when searching for a place name, it is possible that the Google web service supporting this function is temporarily unavailable.

In other cases, we have seen that some users have to restart their device in order for the search function to become available again.

If you have trouble searching for locations, please try waiting an hour or two, and/or restarting your device. If search is still not working, please e-mail us at the support address above

Unable to find Google Play Services on Android Market

TPE for Android 1.1 and above requires Google Play Services to be installed. Some older Android devices may still have the Android Market app installed, instead of the more modern Google Play store app.

A bug in the Google Maps API v2 means that it assumes that you have Google Play Store installed and as a result clicking the “Install” button will either do nothing or crash an app in this case. TPE attempts to detect if you have the old Market app installed and presents a different install message that should direct you to the Android Market to install Google Play Services.

Here is the direct link for Google Play Services:

If you can’t find Google Play Services via the prompts presented in TPE, please click on the appropriate link above, depending on whether you have Google Play or Android Market on your device.

If you are unable to get Google Play Services installed on your phone, please email us for support.


Support for TPE for Desktop

If you have any issues with TPE for Desktop, please e-mail support@photoephemeris.com with details. We’ll get back to you as soon as possible.

If you’re having trouble with Adobe AIR in general, please visit Adobe’s Support pages.

Latest Version: 1.1.1

TPE for Desktop 1.1.1 is now available. Details on new featured and fixes in this release are available here: TPE for Desktop Release Notes.

Blank window on start-up in 1.1.0

You may see a blank window entitled “Updating: TPE” on startup. This is due to a bug with the Adobe Application Updater that shipped with v1.1.0 of TPE. You can safely dismiss the window, however it will recur every time.

We recommend updating to the latest version of TPE (1.1.1 at the time of writing). You can download the latest version from the sidebar on this page.

No Map Displayed

If you’re confronted by an empty map after upgrading to TPE for Desktop 1.0.6 or later, then grab the latest Adobe AIR: http://get.adobe.com/air/. This has resolved the issue every time, so far.

Transferring Locations

Please update to version 1.1.0 to transfer locations between desktop installations. 1.1.0 includes the ability to export your saved locations to KML and to import from KML. To transfer locations, simply export to a KML file on the source machine, transfer the KML file to the other machine and import it there.>

You can use KML import/export to share your locations with other photographers, or with other applications, such as Google Earth.

We are working on the ability to synchronize locations with TPE running on smartphones.

Damaged AIR file

“Sorry, an error has occurred. The application could not be installed because the AIR file is damaged. Try obtaining a new AIR file from the application author.”

We’ve only had reports of this error from users running Windows Vista, to date. It is not unique to TPE, but also affects other AIR-based applications. If you see this message on trying to install TPE for Desktop, try the following techniques:

  • Ensure you have Adobe AIR installed before trying to install TPE
  • Ensure you have administrator rights on the machine you’re installing on
  • Save the AIR file to your local hard drive rather than a network drive
  • Ensure you have the complete file downloaded (the file size for version 1.0.4 should be 2.4MB (2,358,609 bytes)
  • Once downloaded, locate the .air file in in Windows Explorer/Finder and double-click to run.
  • If the above steps do not resolve the issue, try uninstalling and reinstalling the latest version of Adobe AIR
  • As an alternative, you can try selecting “Open…” rather than save when clicking on the download link
  • Try downloading TPE using a different Web Browser from your default, and then installing
  • If you’re still stuck, try the following alternative source for the download: Alternative Download Link

If none of the above works, there are some other approaches to solving this available that you can try:

(Please note: we have not tested the methods documented on the 3rd party sites. Use them at your risk.)

Initialization failed

“Initialization failed: please check the API key, swf location, version and network availability.”

If you see this message, it’s likely that one of the following issues exists:

  • No internet connection – TPE for Desktop requires an internet connection to function
  • Firewall – do you need to grant TPE permission to reach the internet through your firewall
  • Proxy Server settings – do you have some proxy server configuration set that could be preventing TPE from reaching the internet
  • Internet Explorer – on Windows, ensure IE is not set to work offline
  • Anti-virus – check that your anti-virus software has not disabled TPE’s network access

The usual explanation for this problem for WIndows users is that Internet Explorer, for one of the above reasons, cannot get online. Even if your default browser is something other than Internet Explorer, if IE won’t let you browse the web, you’ll get this error message in TPE. Check that IE is not set to work offline and that if it is configured to use a proxy, that the proxy is accessible.

Installer has been misconfigured

“Sorry, an error has occurred. This application cannot be installed because this installer has been misconfigured. Please contact the application author for assistance.”

As is often the case, this doesn’t quite mean what it says. There’s nothing wrong with the installer, but there may be something wrong with the Adobe AIR installation.

This page has tips on how to resolve. Additionally, Adobe’s official troubleshooting page for AIR installation issues is here: Troubleshoot AIR installation.

If this still doesn’t sort out your problem, please let us know by e-mailing support@photoephemeris.com.

System does not support Adobe AIR 2.0

Some computers cannot install Adobe AIR 2.0 or higher, for example Apple Mac G5 machines. In this case, if you still have Adobe AIR 1.5 installed, you can continue to use TPE up to version 1.0.5. This older version is available here:


This is a legacy version of TPE for Desktop, provided “as-is” for customers requiring a version compatible with Adobe AIR 1.5.
File size 2.46MB | Last modified Sun Oct 14, 2012 at 08:35 | Download count 324

Legacy versions of Adobe AIR are available at: http://www.oldapps.com/adobe_air.php