DANCe: Complementing Gaia from the Ground and Preparing for LSST

Monday, 05 May 2014 9 a.m. — 10 a.m. MST

AURA Lecture Hall

NOIRLab South Colloquia
HERVE BOUY (Astrophysicist of Center for Astrobiology in ESAC, Madrid, Spain and NOAO South Visiting Astronomer)

The DANCe projects is a wide field ground-based survey of young nearby associations and clusters meant to prepare and complement the Gaia mission and LSST survey.  Taking advantage of the numerous wide field public archives, we derive precise proper motions and multi-wavelength photometry over several tens of square degrees in young (<600Myr) nearby (<500pc) associations. Our new advanced data processing and astrometric pipelines allow us to reach an accuracy of 0.3 mas/yr (best case) up to i~23mag, thus ~4 mag deeper than Gaia, and comparable to the expected LSST accuracy and sensitivity.  To analyse the million-source catalogues produced by DANCe, we are also developing novel statistical methods based on advanced multi-dimensional probabilistic analysis to derive reliable membership probabilities. 

In the case of the Pleiades cluster, the survey leads to approx. 1650 high confidence (probability>75%) members, or twice the most recent census (dated 2012). The experience acquired with the DANCe project, both for the astrometric and sub-sequent scientific analysis, could be very valuable for the future Gaia and LSST surveys. While our interests are focused on young nearby clusters, the scientific applications are countless, including for example TNO, galactic populations, brown dwarfs, white dwarfs, etc...

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