lightkurve has the following requirements, all of which tend to be available by default in a modern installation of Python:

  • Python: 2.7, 3.5, 3.6 or later.
  • Astropy: 1.3 or later.
  • Numpy: 1.11 or later.
  • Scipy: 0.19 or later.
  • Matplotlib: 1.5.3 or later.
  • Astroquery 0.3.7 or later.

We recommend using the Anaconda Python distribution, which will install Python alongside its most common scientific packages, including all those listed above.

Installing lightkurve

Stable version

The easiest way to install or upgrade lightkurve is with pip, simply run the following command on a terminal window:

$ pip install lightkurve --upgrade


The --upgrade flag is optional, but recommended if you already have lightkurve installed and want to upgrade to the latest version.


If you get a PermissionError this means that you do not have the required administrative access to install new packages to your Python installation. In this case you may consider using the --user option to install the package into your home directory. You can read more about how to do this in the pip documentation.

Development version

Alternatively, if you want to experiment with the latest development version of lightkurve, you can install it straight from GitHub:

$ git clone
$ cd lightkurve
$ pip install -e .

Building documentation


Building the documentation is not necessary unless you are writing new documentation or do not have internet access, because the latest version of lightkurve’s documentation is available online at .

Building the lightkurve documentation requires a few extra packages:

  • sphinx
  • sphinx-automodapi
  • nbsphinx
  • numpydoc

These packages can be installed using conda or pip.

To build the documentation in HTML format, you can do:

cd docs
make html

This will save the documentation website in the ../../lightkurve-docs directory on your system. The notebook-based tutorials will not be recompiled by default because they take some time to build. To recompile the notebooks, type:

make notebooks

Finally, if you have write permission to lightkurve’s GitHub repository, you can upload the documentation using:

make upload