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MPC astrometry submissions

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#1 Lucullus

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Posted 03 June 2019 - 11:43 AM

The asteroid astrometry submission guidelines of the MPC requires not to submit more than three observations per object per night. For professional large telescopes I can understand that a few more are acceptable. Also for NEAs several more make sense, especially PHA. But what I came across on the MPCs Observations Database made me wonder quite a bit: there is an observatory having submitted around 70 observations for 1999KW4 and one with around 50 for 2009FD. Isn't this exagerated or would the MPC also take hundreds of observations of a NEA?



#2 555aaa

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Posted 03 June 2019 - 01:12 PM

That's not a requirement, it's a guideline. You can't submit single observations even when they are stacked but you can submit more than three. Lots of measurements close together doesn't provide a better astrometric solution than a smaller number of better observations.  Now, the new ADES format is supposed to include quality data and so as that is adopted, I think more sites will just submit everything because the quality of each measurement is provided in the ADES format anyway.

 

If you go look at the NEO confirmation page you see that most observatories are reporting three to five observations of newly discovered NEOs per night, spread over a couple hours. That gives you a nice arc and they can cover many objects per night. The big automated surveys generally cover the same field three to four times per night.

 

You can use find_orb from Project Pluto to do an orbit fit of your observations and check your residuals, the key is to have low residuals.

 

-Bruce




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