The answers to fundamental science questions in astrophysics, ranging from the history of the expansion of the universe to the sizes of nearby stars, hinge on our ability to make precise measurements of diverse astronomical objects. As our knowledge of the underlying physics of objects improves along with advances in detectors and instrumentation, the limits on our capability to extract science from measurements is set, not by our lack of understanding of the nature of these objects, but rather by the most mundane of all issues: the precision with which we can calibrate observations in physical units. We stress the need for a program to improve upon and expand the current networks of spectrophotometrically calibrated stars to provide precise calibration with an accuracy of equal to and better than 1% in the ultraviolet, visible and near-infrared portions of the spectrum, with excellent sky coverage and large dynamic range.
U.S. Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information
U.S. Department of Energy
Scholarly Commons Citation
Kent, S. M., Oswalt, T. D., Kaiser, M. E., & Et al. (2009). Photometric Calibrations for 21st Century Science. U.S. Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information, (). https://doi.org/10.2172/951353