Chandra X-Ray Observatory
Skip to the navigation links
Last modified: 25 May 2011


Python Resources

Sherpa is an importable module for the dynamic, object-oriented Python programming language, which means you can write your own Python scripts for use in Sherpa. This easily allows for creating complex analysis and modeling functions, building batch-mode analysis, and extending the provided functionality to meet required needs. Below is a list of Python resources which you may find helpful as you conduct your scientific analysis in Sherpa. To learn about the key features of Python, refer to the official Python website.


The Python Tutorial

Comprehensive documentation provided by the official Python website.

Dive into Python

On-line version of the book Dive into Python, including many detailed examples of usage which prove helpful to both beginner and experienced Python users.

Practical Python for Astronomers[New]

A series of hands-on workshops to explore the Python language and the analysis tools it provides. The emphasis is on using Python to solve real-world problems that astronomers are likely to encounter in research.


Ask SciPy

A site hosted on which allows you to submit a question about Python and receive answers from other users of the site (questions are not limited to those about the scipy or numpy packages).

User Blogs

Sherpa Blog

Includes useful tips and tricks on using Python in Sherpa.

Plumber Jack

Documents miscellaneous items relating to the Python logging package.

Doug Hellmann

The "Python Module of the Week" series provides examples of usage of the various modules contained in the Python standard library.


Beginning Python: From Novice to Professional, by Magnus Lie Hetland
A Primer on Scientific Programming with Python, by Hans Petter Langtangen
Python Scripting for Computational Science, Hans Petter Langtangen
Beginning Python Visualization: Crafting Visual Transformation Scripts, by Shai Vaingast

Last modified: 25 May 2011
Smithsonian Institute Smithsonian Institute

The Chandra X-Ray Center (CXC) is operated for NASA by the Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory. 60 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138 USA.   Email: Smithsonian Institution, Copyright © 1998-2019. All rights reserved.