Proceedings PaperSIM astrometric grid
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The Space Interferometry Mission (SIM) is fundamentally a one-dimensional instrument with a 15-degree field-of-regard. Mission objectives require a global reference grid of thousands of well-understood stars with positions known to 4 microarcseconds which will be used to establish the instrument baseline vector during scientific observations. This accuracy will be achieved by frequently observing a set of stars throughout the mission and performing a global fit of the observations to determine position, proper motion and parallax for each star. Each star will be observed approximately 200 times with about 6.5 stars per single instrument field on the sky. We describe the nature of the reference grid, the candidate objects, and the results of simulations demonstrating grid performance, including estimates of the grid robustness when including effects such as instrument drift and possible contamination of the grid star sample by undetected binaries.