The ESA Gaia mission and its contribution to asteroid orbit determination

Thursday, June 15, 2017
Ora Inizio: 
Ora Fine: 
Dr. Federica Spoto
Observatoire de la Cote d'Azur

The ESA mission Gaia, which is currently surveying the sky from the

Sun-Earth L2 Lagrangian Point, is providing astrometry of stars and

asteroids at few mas. The first Gaia Data Release, which

includes 2 millions of stars with position, parallaxes, and proper

motion and a position catalog of 1.1 billion of stars, has already

shown the strength of this unprecedented power of investigation.


The next Gaia data release in April 2018 will contain not only

billions of stars with proper motions and parallaxes, but also the

observations for more than 10.000 asteroids. I have already exploited

the contribution of the first Gaia data release to asteroid dynamics,

and I am currently working on the validation and scientific

exploitation of the asteroid data for the future releases.


The aim of the talk is to give an overview of the Gaia mission, and

then to show why the celestial mechanic is a key aspect for the

mission: both in the validation of the data and in the contribution of

Gaia to asteroid orbit determination.