Hey, all you astrophotographers. Here's something to rejoice about. The FITS plug-in has been updated
to support color depth precisions of 16- and 32-bit integer, 32bit float, and double-precision floats.
To take advantage of the new support, you'll need to use the current beta version of GIMP, version 2.9. (Under GIMP's numbering system, an odd number after the first decimal point means it is a development version. The current stable version is 2.8. The next stable version will be 2.10.)
Here's an illustration of how much information is retained when 32bit float is used instead of 8bit integer: