How do I calculate right ascension and declination?

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  1. They’re just coordinates on the celestial sphere. RA is longitude, and Dec is the angle from the celestial equator, so the north pole would be +90.
    What do you need to calculate? Angular separation between two points? Angles between planes? Something else?
    You’d need to tell us what you need.

  2. You normally don’t have to calculate them, as they are usually constants, except for solar system objects.
    Are you actually asking how to use setting circles? That’s a different question, and one which most amateur astronomers never deal with. The setting circles on most telescopes are put there purely for decorative purposes, to make the telescope look “scientific.” They are too small to be of any use in finding objects in the sky. Amateur astronomers instead all use “starhopping,” navigating to new objects using the patterns of bright stars nearby.

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