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Astron. Astrophys. 347, 1046-1054 (1999)

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The combination of ground-based astrometric compilation catalogues with the HIPPARCOS Catalogue

I. Single-star mode

R. Wielen, H. Lenhardt, H. Schwan and C. Dettbarn

Astronomisches Rechen-Institut, Moenchhofstrasse 12-14, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany

Received 19 January 1999 / Accepted 20 April 1999


The combination of ground-based astrometric compilation catalogues, such as the FK5 or the GC, with the results of the ESA Astrometric Satellite HIPPARCOS produces for many thousands of stars proper motions which are significantly more accurate than the proper motions derived from the HIPPARCOS observations alone. In the combination of the basic FK5 with the HIPPARCOS Catalogue (i.e., in the FK6), the gain in accuracy is about a factor of two for the proper motions of single stars. The use of the GC still improves the accuracy of the proper motions by a factor of about 1.2 . We derive and describe in detail how to combine a ground-based compilation catalogue with HIPPARCOS. Our analytic approach is helpful for understanding the principles of the combination method. In real applications we use a numerical approach which avoids some (minor) approximations made in the analytic approach. We give a numerical example of our combination method and present an overall error budget for the combination of the ground-based data for the basic FK5 stars and for the GC stars with the HIPPARCOS observations.

In the present paper we describe the `single-star mode' of our combination method. This mode is appropriate for truly single stars or for stars which can be treated like single stars. The specific handling of binaries will be discussed in subsequent papers.

Key words: catalogs – astrometry

Send offprint requests to: R. Wielen (wielen@ari.uni-heidelberg.de)

© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999

Online publication: June 6, 1999