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ASTR 5110, Majewski [FALL 2015]. Lecture Notes

ASTR 5110 (Majewski) Lecture Notes



There are several places to go for repositories of interesting presentations about astromotry: Books:
  • William van Altena, Editor, Astrometry for Astrophysics: Methods, Models and Applications.

It is somewhat ironic that my discussion of astrometry should be left until the very end of the semester, given several interesting aspects of astrometry:

  • It is perhaps the oldest subfield of astronomy (measuring the relative positions of astronomical objects).

  • "Astrometry is the metrological basis of astronomy" (Kovalevsky), and a fundamental underpinning of the entire science of astronomy.

  • Astrometry has a deep tradition at the University of Virginia.

  • I am regarded by some to be an astrometrist by trade (see here, for example).

My excuse is that astrometry is in some ways so exacting and challenging that it is difficult to come up with a practical, empirical experience in a one semester course, and so I have deferred the topic while training you for other lab experiences.

Moreover, it seems that, despite a growing appreciation for astrometry as a discipline, and with the launch of the Gaia mission (and the efforts put into the now-cancelled Space Interferometry Mission), few people want to "get their hands dirty" in the true art of astrometry (see worries about a "crisis" in educating the future astrometrist in the previously cited van Altena article, for instance --- a crisis to which my very deference on this topic is contributing!).

My apologies, but I have not had time to create a proper web lecture on this topic. But here are links to some presentations by other astrometry experts that I may refer to in my "quick and loose" presentation on the subject.

Here are the slides from the above talks I actually discussed in the single class lecture we had, in order discussed:

  • McAlister slides 1-11.

  • Quick pass through Hoeg.

  • McAlister slides 18-23.

  • First Dinescu lecture slides 15-26.

  • McAlister slides 24, 26-32 quickly.

  • Girard lecture entirely, with brief look at Slide 7 of Stavinschi's talk.

  • Meant to discuss the WCS slides in the Rieke & Hinz talk, but ran out of time. Students will be interested to look at that.

The combined slides in almost the same order are here.

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All material copyright © 2011 Steven R. Majewski. All rights reserved. These notes are intended for the private, noncommercial use of students enrolled in Astronomy 5110 at the University of Virginia.