EAS Tycho Brahe Prize Lecture 2011 - Hipparcos: a Retrospective
Publication date: 30 Sep 2011
Authors: Perryman, M.
Journal: Astronomy and Astrophys Review
Preprint. Paper to appear in Astronomy and Astrophys Review, 2011.
The Hipparcos satellite was launched in 1989. It was the first, and remains to date the only, attempt at performing large-scale astrometric measurements from space. Hipparcos marked a fundamentally new approach to the field of astrometry, revolutionising our knowledge of the positions, distances, and space motions of the stars in the solar neighbourhood. In this retrospective, I look back at the processes which led to the mission's acceptance, provide a short summary of the underlying measurement principles and the experiment's scientific achievements, and a conclude with a brief summary of its principal legacy - the Gaia mission.