Interest in Accurate Star Positions
Date: Winter 2012-2013
Why are scientist so interested in obtaining accurate measurements of star positions? For what purpose can this information be used?
Great question. Over decades, stars positions can change as they move about the galaxy. But on a more immediate level, comets and asteroids move over hours and days, and accurate star positions allow us to compute where the comets are, were, and will be.
David H. Levy
Thanks for the question. It is important to obtain accurate measurements of the relative position of stars since that data is needed in understanding the expansion of the universe, the star's brightness, and size.
I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have more questions.
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Update: December 2011