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Proceedings Paper

GAIA: origin and evolution of the Milky Way
Author(s): Gerard F. Gilmore; Michael A.C. Perryman; Lennart Lindegren; Fabio Favata; Erik Hoeg; Mario G. Lattanzi; Xavier Luri; Francois Mignard; Siegfried Roeser; P. Tim de Zeeuw
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Paper Abstract

GAIA is a short-listed candidate for the ESA Cornerstone mission C5, meeting the ESA Survey Committee requirement for an observatory mission, dedicated to astrometry, providing 10 micro-arcsecond accuracy at 15th magnitude. The GAIA mission concept follows the dramatic success of the ESA HIPPARCOS mission, utilizing a continuously scanning spacecraft, accurately measuring 1D coordinates along great circles, in two simultaneous fields of view, separated by a known angle. These 1D relative coordinates are later converted to the five astrometric parameters of position and motions in a global analysis. GAIA will provide precise astrometry and multi-color photometry for all the one billion stars, quasars, and compact galaxies to I equals 20 on the sky. GAIA will additionally provide the sixth phase- space parameter, radial velocity, from a slitless spectroscopic survey of most stars brighter than about magnitude 17. The technical challenges are considerable, but achievable. The scientific returns are than about magnitude 17. The technical challenges are considerable, but achievable. The scientific returns are spectacular, with greatest impact in the study of stellar populations and dynamical structure of the galaxies of our local group, and in providing the first complete census of the stars and massive planets in the solar neighborhood. GAIA will revolutionize our knowledge of the origin and evolution of our Milky Way Galaxy, and of the distribution of planetary system around other stars.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 July 1998
PDF: 10 pages
Proc. SPIE 3350, Astronomical Interferometry, (24 July 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.317134
Show Author Affiliations
Gerard F. Gilmore, Institute of Astronomy (United Kingdom)
Michael A.C. Perryman, ESTEC (Netherlands)
Lennart Lindegren, Lund Observatory (Sweden)
Fabio Favata, ESTEC (Netherlands)
Erik Hoeg, Copenhagen Univ. Observatory (Denmark)
Mario G. Lattanzi, Osservatorio Astronomico di Torino (Italy)
Xavier Luri, Univ. de Barcelona (Spain)
Francois Mignard, CERGA (France)
Siegfried Roeser, Astronomisches Rechen Institut Heidelberg (Germany)
P. Tim de Zeeuw, Sterrewacht Leiden/Univ. Leiden (Netherlands)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3350:
Astronomical Interferometry
Robert D. Reasenberg, Editor(s)

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