Gaia Newsletter #23

 

Compilation of news and updates from the Gaia mission since late June 2022.

 

Gaia Future Releases

The Gaia Data Release 3 (Gaia DR3) released 13 June 2022 covered 34 months of data. Already before this milestone, the processing for future releases had been proceeding. Gaia Data Release 4 (Gaia DR4) will cover 66 months of observations including all data from the nominal mission. In the current schedule the Gaia DR4 is anticipated to take place not before end of 2025. Unlike for Gaia EDR3/DR3, there are no plans to split Gaia DR4. However, some early tasters of very specific products will be provided in 2023.

This Focused Product Release (FPR) is planned to contain six different flavours of data:

  1. Updated astrometry for Solar System objects,
  2. Astrometry and photometry from engineering images taken in selected regions of high source density (only Omega Cen for this FPR),
  3. The first results of quasars' environment analysis for gravitational lenses search,
  4. Extended radial velocity epoch data for Long Period Variables,
  5. Pre-main sequence accretion parameters, and
  6. Diffuse Interstellar Bands from aggregated RVS spectra.

All these products will be expanded in Gaia DR4. The schedule for Gaia Data Release 5 (Gaia DR5), containing the nominal and extension periods of the mission fully, will be decided after the long term planning has been approved by ESA and the member states funding the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC).

 

Gaia science performance pages updated

The webpages with the expected science performance for the Gaia mission have been updated taking into account Gaia Data Release 3. Expected performances are available for Gaia DR4 and Gaia DR5. PyGaia will be updated soon as well.

 

Gaia DR3 papers

The Gaia DR3 papers page has been updated with links to the papers published since June 2022. Please realize that the Gaia DR3 papers are complementary to the Gaia EDR3 papers.

 

Public Gaia DPAC documents

A selection of documents by the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC) are made available to the public. They can help give some more context and insight specifically needed for understanding certain published articles. With each data release, documents are published when they are referred to from release papers or from the data release documentation.

 

Gaia Community tools

From the Gaia Tools page a link to a webpage discussing Gaia community tools has been added. It lists useful tools developed by the scientific community and accessible often through Github. There is no guarantee from Gaia mission side that these tools will remain available and that they work, we just wanted to help you, as user, find these tools.

 

Updates to the Gaia Help Pages

New Frequently Asked Questions have been added to the Gaia help pages: "Why are there cases with negative flux ratio F2/F1 in the binary_masses table?" and "Why are there no inclinations for astrometric or astrometric-spectroscopic orbits in the NSS_two_body_orbit table?". A silent release of the Gaia DR3 documentation has been published fixing minor typos.

 

ESA Archival Research Visitor Programme

To increase the scientific return from its Space Science missions, the European Space Agency welcomes applications from scientists interested in pursuing research projects based on data publicly available in the ESA Space Science Archives.

The ESA Archival Research Visitor Programme is open to scientists, at all career levels, affiliated with institutes in ESA Member States and Collaborating States. Early-career scientists (within 10 years of the PhD) are particularly encouraged to apply. Applications by and for PhD students are also welcome.

Residence lasts typically between one and three months, also distributed over multiple visits, depending on the complexity of the research project. The research projects can be carried out at ESAC (Madrid, Spain) and at ESTEC (Noordwijk, Netherlands). During their stay, visiting scientists will have access to archives and mission specialists for help with the retrieval, calibration, and analysis of archival data. In principle, all areas of space research covered by ESA science missions can be supported.

The next deadline for applications is 31 October 2022. For further details, including areas of research and contact information, please refer to this webpage.

 

Published on esa.int/gaia

The following stories were published on esa portal on space science dedicated to the Gaia mission since late June:

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

The following stories have been published on Gaia Cosmos since the last newsletter late June:

Highlighted on @ESAGaia twitter over summer were the "Gaia Data Release 3 stories":

 

ESA Research Fellowships in Space Sciences

The call for European Space Agency's Research Fellowships in Space Science has been opened. The deadline for applications has been extended to 7 October.

ESA's postdoctoral Research Fellowship programme offers early-career scientists and engineers the possibility to carry out research in a variety of disciplines related to Space Science, Space Applications or Space Technology. Research Fellowships in Space Science specifically offer the opportunity to contribute to ESA's endeavour to explore our Solar System and the Universe, in the fields of Heliophysics, Planetary Science, Astrophysics and Fundamental Physics.

Approximately 11 ESA Fellowships in Space Science are offered this year. Independent proposals for innovative research associated with one or more of our missions are welcome. More information on the Research Fellowship programme and on how to apply can be found on this webpage.

 

Shaw Prize award ceremony

In May 2022 it was announced that the Shaw Prize in Astronomy was awarded to Lennart Lindegren and Michael Perryman, for their "lifetime contributions to space astrometry, and in particular for their role in the conception and design of the European Space Agency's Hipparcos and Gaia missions."

More information on the awarded Shaw Prize can be found in this press release by the IAU and in this announcement by the Shaw Prize.

The Shaw Prize award ceremony will be livestreamed on 29 September through:

 

Workshops / conferences related to Gaia

Find an overview of upcoming Gaia related conferences and workshops here. If you wish to advertise your Gaia related workshop or conference here, get in touch with the Gaia Helpdesk.

 

Did you know...

 

Gaia PhD theses

A list of PhD theses related to Gaia can be found on this page. Newest additions to this page are:

 

Year Name Title Institute(s) Country Supervisor(s)
2021 Breuval, Louise The Cepheid Distance Scale: from the Gaia Local Calibration to Distant Galaxies LESIA, Paris Observatory France Pierre Kervella
2021 Godoy-Rivera, Diego Exploring Gyrochronology with Precise Stellar Characterization (paper 1, paper 2, paper 3)


The Ohio State University

United States Marc H. Pinsonneault
2021 Cullinane, Lara The Structure and Kinematics of the Magellanic Stellar Periphery The Australian National University Australia Dougal Mackey, Gary Da Costa
2021 Bennett, Morgan Vertical Oscillations in the Solar Neighbourhood and the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy University of Toronto Canada Jo Bovy
2022 Guo, Difeng A Gaia Census of Young Moving Groups in the Solar Neigborhood Anthon Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Amsterdam The Netherlands Lex Kaper, Anthony Brown
2020 Zhihong, He Searching for Open Clusters in Gaia DR2 and Study of Galactic Spiral Structure University of Science and Technology of China China Ye Xu
2022 Viscasillas Vázquez, Carlos Chemical abundances of neutron capture elements in the Milky Way Institute of Theoretical Physics and Astronomy (ITPA) - Vilnius University Lithuania Gražina Tautvaišienė

 

Interested in communicating your Gaia science results?

We are interested to hear about your Gaia science results. Maybe you have an image or visualisation to share, or you might be working towards a paper to be published. On the “Communicate your Gaia science results page” you can find some guidelines on how to contact us and what type of information will be needed from you. Please remember to contact us early in the process!

 

 

 

Gaia Newsletter #22

 

Full overview of the published Gaia Data Release 3!

 

Gaia DR3 events

Many events were organized, and most of them were recorded. Watch the  recorded press briefings from the Gaia Data Release 3 events page.  Also the main press briefing by ESA/Gaia/DPAC as was broadcasted over ESA WebTV can be found from this page. The media kit for the data release is available for download in many different languages.

 

Gaia DR3 papers

Links to the published or submitted papers can be found from the Gaia DR3 papers page. This page also contains links to tables published along with some of these papers.

 

Gaia DR3 software tools

A page has been published which describes and links to a set of software tools as developed by the Gaia Data Processing and Analsysis Consortium. Gaia Data Release 3 brings various new and "complex" data products such as BP/RP spectra, RVS spectra, Monte Carlo Markov Chain samples from the astrophysical parameter inference, etc. To help the scientific community use these new data products, these tools were developed. Below a quick summary of these tools are given. Find full details from the Gaia DR3 software tools overview page and the pages for each specific tool. Next to these new tools, the tools already available for Gaia DR2 and Gaia EDR3 which are still applicable to Gaia DR3 were copied over onto the overview page.

  • GaiaXPy Tool: BP/RP spectra (often shortened as XP spectra) are published for the first time in Gaia Data Release 3 (DR3). In their first release, only source mean spectra will be available: these are spectra that have been generated from a number of single observations (transits) of the same object. Epoch spectra, i.e. spectra consisting of one single observation, will become available in future releases. The GaiaXPy tool is a Python library to facilitate handling Gaia BP/RP spectra as distributed from the Gaia archive.
  • G-band bolometric Correction Tool: This is a tool to calculate bolometric corrections in the Gaia (E)DR3 G-band. It is based on the same set of models and interpolation method that has been used in Gaia DR3 to produce luminosities in the astrophysical parameter tables.
  • GSP-Phot Metallicity Calibration Tool: This is a tool to calibrate the stellar metallicity estimates provided by GSP-Phot, the Generalised Stellar Parametrizer pipeline based on Gaia photometry. It reproduces the LAMOST DR6 [Fe/H] scale.
  • OA Self-Organising Map Tool (GUASOM): For Gaia DR3 Outlier Analysis (OA), 56 million objects are analyzed, with a probability of membership to typical astronomical object classes below a certain threshold (see documentation), i.e. classification outliers. Self-Organizing Maps (SOM) is the unsupervised clustering method selected to perform this task. To facilitate the analysis of the Gaia DR3 outliers map, a free access adaptive visualization tool has been developed, GUASOM flavour DR3, that allows to explore the relations between millions of objects of complex nature, with several oriented domain visualizations.
  • Extinction as a function of (l,b): This tool provides access to the total Galactic extinction as published in Gaia DR3 at user defined coordinates (or a list of coordinates). The maps are available at four different angular resolutions (HEALPix levels 6, 7, 8, and 9). Users may also obtain the uncertainty of the measured extinction as well as other flags associated with the creation of the extinction maps.
  • Extinction coefficients in various passbands: Dustapprox is a suite to compute photometric extinction coefficients in various passbands.
  • Fitted gaia (E)DR3 photometric uncertainties tool: This tool reproduces the median Gaia (E)DR3 photometric uncertainty for the G, BP, and RP instruments and associated broad-band magnitudes and allows to scale the uncertainties to a user-defined number of observations.
  • Tools for non-single stars: This software provides two functionalities to manage the output of the non-single star (NSS) solutions: one to derive the covariance matrix from the uncertainties and the correlation matrix, and one to transform the Thiele-Innes orbital elements to the classical Campbell elements with propagation of the uncertainties.
  • TUTORIAL: ACCESS OF ALL DATALINK PRODUCTS: This Jupyter notebook tutorial explains how to access DataLink products (epoch photometry, BP/RP spectra, RVS spectra, Monte Carlo Markov Chain samples) for multiple sources, explaining the various data structures (RAW, INDIVIDUAL, and COMBINED).
  • tutorial: programmatic download of large datasets provided through datalink: This Jupyter notebook tutorial shows how to access and download DataLink products (epoch photometry, BP/RP spectra, RVS spectra, Monte Carlo Markov Chain samples) for datasets with more than 5000 sources (which is the limit of the Gaia ESA Archive web interface).
  • BULK DOWNLOAD SUMMARY AND EXAMPLE CONE SEARCH SCRIPTS: This tutorial, supported by a Jupyter notebook, explains how the bulk download repository for Gaia DR3 has been organised and structured using the HEALPix sky tessellation and how to retrieve all Gaia DR3 data for a particular, user-defined region in the sky from this repository.
  • Corrected flux excess factor
  • Parallax zero-point correction example recipe
  • Using Gaia parallaxes

 

Gaia DR3 auxiliary data

Gaia DR3 auxiliary data provides small tables with additional data which complement the Gaia Data Release 3 data and its description in the papers and documentation. A short summary is given here. Find all details linked from the Gaia DR3 auxiliary data overview page.

 

Gaia DR3 known issues

The page "Gaia DR3 known issues" lists any issues found in Gaia Data Release 3 which could not be incorporated into the official data release, or which were discovered after the release of the data and publication of the release documentation. Further information can be found from the data release documentation, as well as from the data release overview paper and the data release processing papers. A short summary of the issues posted on this page is given below. Find full details on the Gaia DR3 known issues page. One of the known issues of Gaia EDR3 remains aapplicable to Gaia DR3. Please be aware that the other Gaia EDR3 known issue regarding G-band corrections has been corrected for Gaia DR3!

 

The surface brightness sample published in the qso_candidates is based on an input list of sources described in Section 9.2 of the on-line documentation. This list was built based on external catalogues and the table qso_catalogue_name provides the names of the applicable catalogues for each of the sources featuring surface brightness parameters in qso_candidates. Due to an oversight during the processing, the catalogue name is missing for 494 sources. In this file, the list of affected sourceIds is provided.

The number of observations (num_of_obs) in the sso_source table contains a wrong value in 4 cases, with the correct number being present in the sso_observation table:

  • sourceId -4284051496, corresponding to number_mp (91580), has 317 num_of_obs in the sso_source table, but 310 entries in the sso_observation table;
  • sourceId -4283766166, corresponding to number_mp (120113), has 74 num_of_obs in the sso_source table, but 69 entries in the sso_observation table;
  • sourceId -4281797236, corresponding to number_mp (317006), has 64 num_of_obs in the sso_source table, but 63 entries in the sso_observation table;
  • sourceId -4283795346, corresponding to number_mp (117195), has 76 num_of_obs in the sso_source table, but 75 entries in the sso_observation_table.

For more information see the 'Gaia Data Release 3: Catalogue Validation' paper and the Validation chapter of the Gaia data release documentation.

Upon validation of the data, a minor processing bug was discovered in the FLAME software which resulted in a list of 153,474 sources that have valid FLAME parameters but for which the associated field bc_flame is set to null. The user can recover these values by using the bolometric correction function which is provided as part of the astrophysical parameter tool which is available on the Gaia DR3 software tools webpage. For more information, see Creevey et al. (2022).

The flags_gspspec chain includes a specific character named "extrapol" (c.f. Table 2 in Recio-Blanco et al. 2022) that controls the extrapolation level of the GSPspec parametrization. A bug in the implementation of this "extrapol" flag has left 251 sources with at least one extrapolated parameter and values outside the corresponding validity ranges. The list of Gaia DR3 identifiers of these sources is in the attached file.

The Gaia DR3 table named vari_planetary_transit contains information on the period and other properties (transit reference time, depth, duration, etc.) of 41 new planetary transit candidates and 173 known exoplanets (Eyer et al. 2022, Panahi et al. 2022). The data in this table contain serious errors and users are advised not to use them. A corrected table named vari_planetary_transit_corrected will be published as a Gaia DR3 known issue.

This known issue was applicable for Gaia EDR3 and remains applicable for Gaia DR3. 

 

Published on esa.int/gaia

The following stories were published on esa portal on space science dedicated to the Gaia mission:

The press release from ESA on Gaia Data Release 3 discusses: "Gaia sees strange stars in most detailed Milky Way survey to date", accompanied with some image and video releases:

More press releases were published by the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium institutes.

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

The following stories have been published on Gaia Cosmos since the last newsletter in early June:

To help the community get quickly up to date on the different Gaia DR3 products and contents of some of the papers, a set of 20 stories was published on Gaia Cosmos on the release day, all linked from an overview page for these stories "Gaia Data Release 3 stories".

 

Gaia Data Release 3 overview page

Find all relevant information for the Gaia Data Release 3 linked from the  Gaia Data Release 3 overview page.

 

Gaia Newsletter #21

 

Details on how to connect to the Gaia DR3 release events, links to the Gaia Data Release 3 media kit, and more!

 

Gaia DR3 events

Many events are organised to introduce the Gaia Data Release 3 to the community. The Gaia DR3 events page also contains details on the central ESA/Gaia/DPAC press event which will be streamed on ESA WebTV between 10:00 and 11:00 CEST on 13 June. For full scientific details, please also connect to one of the local Gaia DPAC events organised in lots of countries in many different languages, most of them also kicking off at 10:00 CEST but spread over the full day with dedicated talks to the general public, the scientific community or the local press. Livestream URLs have been updated already for some of the events, all URLs will be available close to the release day.

 

Extended downtime of the Gaia Archive

Please be warned that the Gaia Archive will be down to allow for the preparation of the release from Monday 6 June 09:00 CEST until Monday 13 June 12:00 CEST, when the Gaia DR3 data is published.

 

Gaia DR3 Media kit and Call to the media

ESA published on 31 May its invitation to the media for the Gaia DR3 press briefing on 13 June between 10:00 and 11:00 CEST. A media kit detailing the contents of the release has been published as well. The media kit is available in the languages: English, German, French, Spanish, Italian and Dutch.

 

GaiaUnlimited Community  Workshop

From September 13 to 15 2022 the first GaiaUnlimited community workshop will take place in Heidelberg, Germany. The GaiaUnlimited project aims at determining the Gaia survey selection function and providing corresponding data and tools.

The workshop's theme is the Gaia selection function and how to use it. This event will be a three-day workshop and unconference, where we will discuss and learn from each other about the finer details of the Gaia selection function and how to build and use it in various contexts.

Participants will be working with the new GaiaUnlimited selection function tools, for which we will assist as needed, and we will improve them based on the feedback we'll receive. We hope this workshop could lead to some new collaborations or initial joint studies. We want to dedicate a significant amount of time to unconference sessions and informal discussions.

You can sign up for the workshop here: https://gaia-unlimited.github.io/community-workshop1/ *There is no conference fee.*

There will be space for about 40 participants. Registration is open until July 1. After selection based on the registration form, we will send out the invitations to attend the workshop on July 15.

 

More workshops / conferences related to Gaia

Find an overview of upcoming Gaia related conferences and workshops here. If you wish to advertise your Gaia related workshop or conference here, get in touch with the Gaia Helpdesk.

 

Shaw prize for Lennart Lindegren and Michael Perryman

On 24 May 2022, it was announced that the Shaw Prize in Astronomy was awarded to Lennart Lindegren and Michael Perryman, for their "lifetime contributions to space astrometry, and in particular for their role in the conception and design of the European Space Agency's Hipparcos and Gaia missions." "The Shaw Prize was established by Mr. Run Run Shaw in 2002, with a clear vision to honour contributors in Astronomy, Life Science and Medicine, and Mathematical Sciences, regardless of race, nationality, gender, and religious belief."

Lennart Lindegren and Michael Perryman led the proposal for the Gaia Mission in 1993. Lennart Lindegren is a Professor Emeritus of Lund Observatory in Sweden, and is still active in the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium, more specifically on the Astrometric Global Iterative Solution. Michael Perryman is currently Adjunct Professor at the University College Dublin in Ireland and was Study Scientist and later Project Scientist for the Gaia mission in the period from 1995 to 2006.

More information on the awarded Shaw Prize can be found in this press release by the IAU and in this announcement by the Shaw Prize.

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

The following stories have been published on Gaia Cosmos since the last newsletter in late May 2022:

 

Did you know...

 

Gaia Newsletter #20

 

Gaia Data Release 3 events are now announced, as well as a tool for use with BP/RP spectra. More details in this newsletter!

 

Gaia DR3 software tools: release of GaiaXPy 1.0.0

The first release of GaiaXPy is now available together with a small random selection of BP/RP spectra to enable the community to familiarise itself with this new data product and tool. Find full details on this release in this story. On the release day, this information will be provided from the new Gaia DR3 software tools page, where more tools developed by Gaia DPAC will be advertized.

 

Gaia DR3 events

Many events are organised to introduce the Gaia Data Release 3 to the community. The Gaia DR3 events page also contains details on the central ESA/Gaia/DPAC press event which will be streamed on ESA WebTV.  Next to a central ESA/Gaia/DPAC briefing at 10:00 CEST on 13 June, there will be events in Belgium, Brazil, Croatia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Italy, Poland, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland and the United Kingdom, starting at different times but showing you the Gaia DR3 results from 10:00 CEST onwards. The events will be in different languages and targeting different audiences, from press to general public to scientific community. This is indicated with each event.

Some events are open to all, while some parts of the events are invitation only. In the latter case, the invitations will be sent out by the local organizers of the event. Details on how to access the livestream of the events (which are open to all) will be shared closer to the release day.

 

Extended downtime of the Gaia Archive

Please be warned that the Gaia Archive will be down to allow for the preparation of the release from Monday 6 June 09:00 CEST until Monday 13 June 12:00 CEST, when the Gaia DR3 data is published.

 

Gaia DR3 info

A summary of the contents of Gaia Data Release 3 can be found on the Gaia DR3 contents page. An overview of all information and additional pages for the release can be found from the Gaia DR3 overview page. The draft Gaia DR3 data model was published to allow you to prepare for the release and is accessible here. Gaia DR3 previes can be found from the Gaia DR3 preview page. An overview of papers coming out with the release of Gaia DR3 is given on the Gaia DR3 papers page.

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

The following stories have been published on Gaia Cosmos since the last newsletter in early May 2022:

 

Stories on ESA.int

 

PhD theses related to Gaia

A list of PhD theses related to Gaia can be found on this page. The new PhD theses posted on this page since last newsletter are:

Year Name Title Institute(s) Country Supervisor(s)
2021 Cullinane, Lara The Structure and Kinematics of the Magellanic Stellar Periphery The Australian National University Australia Dougal Mackey, Gary Da Costa
2021 Bennett, Morgan Vertical Oscillations in the Solar Neighbourhood and the Sagittarius Dwarf Galaxy University of Toronto Canada Jo Bovy
2022 Guo, Difeng A Gaia Census of Young Moving Groups in the Solar Neigborhood Anthon Pannekoek Institute for Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Amsterdam The Netherlands Lex Kaper, Anthony Brown

 

Did you know...

  • that the Gaia DR3 release is less than 23 days away?
  • a media kit will be made available in advance of the release, in 6 languages.
  • that the Gaia mission is now 2865 days in science operations?
  • Gaia has observed over 200,000,000,000 transits by now?

 

 

Gaia Newsletter #19

 

More updates on the upcoming Gaia Data Release 3 in this newsletter!

 

Gaia DR3 release day

On 13 June 2022 at 10:00 CEST many Gaia release events will kick off providing you with more details on the contents of the release. The data itself will be released at 12:00 CEST on 13 June 2022. Stay tuned for our events. They will be published one one events page which will be made accessible from our Gaia Data Release 3 overview page.

 

Gaia DR3 contents

Updates to the Gaia DR3 contents page have been published over the past two months. To complement the astrometry and photometry in Gaia's Early Data Release 3, on 13 June many complementary data sets will be published: radial velocities, astrophysical parameters, variability classifications, solar system objects, quasar candidates, galaxy candidates, non-single stars and BP/RP spectra as well as RVS spectra. A summary is given in the table below, and can be found on the Gaia DR3 contents page.

 

Extended downtime of the Gaia Archive

Please be warned that the Gaia Archive will be down to allow for the preparation of the release from Monday 6 June 09:00 CEST until Monday 13 June 12:00 CEST, when the Gaia DR3 data is published.

 

Draft Gaia DR3 data model

To allow the scientific community to prepare for the upcoming data release, a draft version of the Gaia data model has been published. It is accessible here. Please be warned that the tables related to the Gaia-ESO survey will not be released on 13 June but are expected to be published in the months after the Gaia DR3 release.

 

Updates to the Gaia DR3 overview page

The Gaia DR3 overview page has been updated. A new category has been put in place called "Gaia DR3 auxiliary data". This category will lead to a page with information on Gaia DR3 passbands, the Gaia (candidate) exoplanet list, the Gaia DR3 solar analogue spectrum as used for the Gaia's solar system objects, and more auxiliary files for astrophysical parameters, solar system objects, spectra, ... Another new category has been added called "Gaia DR3 software tools" which will lead to a dedicated page listing some tools made available by the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium.

 

Gaia DR3 previews

An additional preview has been published on Gaia DR3 RR Lyrae stars and is accessible from the Gaia DR3 preview page.

 

Gaia DR3 papers

A full list of the expected papers coming out with the release of Gaia DR3 is provided on the Gaia DR3 papers page. Please be aware that some release papers will come with additional curated tables which will be made available from the Gaia Archive or through the publisher.

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

The following stories have been published on Gaia Cosmos since the last newsletter in February 2022:

 

Stories on ESA.int

 

Publication of the Gaia Celestial Reference Frame 3 cross match table

Following the publication of the Gaia Collaboration paper "Gaia Early Data Release 3: The celestial reference frame (Gaia-CRF3)" the associated webpage containing the Gaia-CRF3 cross match table was published as well. This page contains a downloadable table providing the location of each of the Gaia-CRF3 sources that define the Gaia Celestial Reference Frame, and this page is accessible from the Gaia DR3 auxiliary data page.

Keep an eye out for this page on the release day as well, as more auxiliary data will be published on 13 June.

 

PhD theses related to Gaia

A list of PhD theses related to Gaia can be found on this page. There are no new additions since February to this page.

 

Did you know...

  • Gaia DR3 release is less than 40 days away now!
  • Gaia has observed more than 200 billion times sources transiting its field-of-view by now. Over the course of its operational lifetime (since July 2014 to now) this amounts to an average of 70,539,440 transits observed per day or 48,986 transits observed per minute on average.
  • Publications based on Gaia data are gathered in a dedicated library, which is accessible from this page. On average, 4 to 5 Gaia-related papers are written per day!

 

 

Gaia Newsletter #18

 

Today Gaia announced the release date for Gaia's third catalogue: Monday 13 June 2022 at 12:00 CEST. Mark the date!

 

Gaia DR3 release date

The Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium and ESA are pleased to announce that Gaia Data Release 3 will be published on Monday 13 June 2022 at 12:00 CEST. A full overview of related webpages and content is given from the Gaia Data Release 3 overview page. A snapshot of the contents can be found on this page, which will be updated closer to the release date when the final validation is completed. A few previews for Gaia DR3 have been published, with more expected in the coming months. The processing of the data released with Gaia DR3 will be explained in detail in the Gaia Data Release documentation and its complementary processing papers. The titles of the processing papers, as well as the titles of the performance verification articles can be found from the Gaia DR3 papers page.


Gaia DR3 papers

Today, the titles of the expected papers associated to Gaia's data release 3 have been announced. There will be 36 processing papers, which complement the Gaia Data Release Documentation in describing the processing that took place to transform the raw data coming from the Gaia space telescope into the scientific data available soon from the Gaia Archive. 9 Performance Verification papers will demonstrate the scientific quality of the catalogue, and one overview paper to summarize the data set.

 

Gaia DR3 previews

A few previews of Gaia data products have been published over the past months. More are expected soon. These Gaia DR3 previews will highlight specific data products coming out with Gaia's release on 13 June 2022.

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

The following stories were published on Gaia Cosmos since the last newsletter, targeting the Gaia scientific community:

 

Gaia stories by ESA Science

The following stories were published on the ESA portal website, targeting the general public:

 

Conferences

From 27 June to 1 July the Annual Meeting of the European Astronomical Society will be held in Valencia, Spain. A full update on Gaia can be expected from Symposium S12 "Gaia: The (TWO) Billion Star Galaxy Census: The Dawn of Gaia DR3" to be held 27 and 28 June 2022. More conferences linked to the Gaia mission and its data are regularly posted here.

 

Updates to the Gaia help pages

While preparing for Gaia Data Release 3, also some of the content on our Gaia Help pages is gradually being updated. The Gaia Help pages can be found here.

 

Other News from Gaia

Find below a compilation of news items published by the Gaia mission:

With sadness we announce the passing away of Dimitri Pourbaix

It is with great sadness that we learned of the passing away of Dimitri Pourbaix on 14 November 2021. Since 2006, he was leading the Belgian participation in the Gaia data processing and analysis consortium, was member of the Gaia DPAC executive and mostly dedicated to the management of the Coordination Unit CU4. He will never see the publication of the long-awaited catalogue of binary stars for Gaia DR3, that he has so much contributed to, resolving in particular the orbits of astrometric binaries.

An online condolence register has been made available by the Institut d'Astronomie et d'Astrophysique (Université Libre de Bruxelles) for anyone who wishes to post a condolence message. An obituary can be found here.

Gaia Catalogue of Nearby Stars in the Gaia Archive

The Gaia Catalogue of Nearby Stars is now available from the Gaia Archive. It can be found in the category "other" where also external catalogues to be used in combination with Gaia data can be found.

Vacancy at the Lohrmann Observatory in Dresden

The Lohrmann Observatory, Technische Universität Dresden invites applications for a position of Research Associate to work for Gaia science and data processing within Gaia DPAC (Data Processing and Analysis Consortium). The position is currently funded until 31 December 2025. More information can be found here.

 

PhD theses related to Gaia

A list of PhD theses related to Gaia can be found on this page. Recent additions to this page are given below:

 

 

Gaia Newsletter #17

 

This newsletter brings you up to speed on the expected contents of Gaia Data Release 3, which will be released in the second quarter of 2022.

 

Gaia DR3 contents

The webpage detailing the expected contents for Gaia Data Release 3 has been published on Gaia Cosmos, including links to detailed slides presented at the European Astronomical Society's annual meeting. Gaia Data Release 3 or Gaia DR3 is currently planned for the second quarter of 2022 and will complement the astrometry and photometry data published in Gaia EDR3. Currently validation of the data is ongoing, so the contents and numbers provided on the page are still preliminary.

Also the Gaia Data Release 3 overview page was published, which will serve as the starting point for all information related to Gaia DR3.

Below an overview is given of the different data products that can be expected with Gaia DR3.

 

Gaia DR3: Radial velocities

Gaia DR3 is expected to contain about 33 million radial velocities, this is more than 4 times the amount published in Gaia Data Release 2. The magnitude range will go up to about 14th magnitude in Gaia DR3 (as compared to going up to 12th magnitude in Gaia DR2) and the temperature range is broader, with an effective temperature range of about 3100 and 14,500 K. Radial velocities tell us whether a star moves towards or away from us. When combined with Gaia EDR3 proper motions, the full velocity of a source is known. Gaia DR2 contains about 7 million radial velocities already, more info on the published radial velocities in Gaia DR2 and what is expected in Gaia DR3 can be found from the below sources:

 

Gaia DR3: Spectra

For the first time, Gaia spectra will be published in Gaia DR3. It is expected that there will be more than 100 million BP/RP spectra (Blue Photometer / Red Photometer) for a G magnitude below 17.6. For about 1 million well-behaved objects, RVS spectra will be given. More information can be found from the Gaia DR3 contents page and the below stories were published on these topics:

 

Gaia DR3: Variable stars

Coordination Unit 7 of the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium has prepared the variable-star classifications for about 13 million sources. This has been done for approximately 25 different variability types. With Gaia Data Release 2, classifications for about 550,000 variable sources were given so the variable star information from Gaia will increase with a factor of about 23.

More information on variable stars with Gaia can be found from the below sources:

 

Gaia DR3: the Gaia Andromeda Photometric Survey (GAPS)

With Gaia Data Release 3, a special survey will be released called the Gaia Andromeda Photometric Survey (GAPS). This survey consists of the photometric time series for *ALL* Gaia sources within 5.5 degrees radius field centred on the Andromeda galaxy. There are approximately 1 million sources in this survey.

 

Gaia DR3: Astrophysical Parameters

It is expected that there will be object classifications for about 1 billion objects (109) and about half a billion astrophysical parameters. This is a steep increase with respect to Gaia DR2 and will be a big release for Coordination Unit 8, responsible for astrophysical parameter determination.

More information on Gaia's astrophysical parameters can be found from the sources below:

 

Gaia DR3: Non-single stars

For the first time, results from the non-single star pipeline of Coordination Unit 4 will be published in Gaia DR3. It is expected that Gaia DR3 will contain a few 100,000 non-single stars. Non-single stars refer to both binary stars and multiple stars. A presentation was given at EAS 2021 and a preview for one case was provided in this story on the HIP 70674 orbital solution resulting from Gaia DR3 processing.

 

Gaia DR3: QSO host and galaxy morphological characterisation

A few million quasars and galaxies are planned to be published in Gaia DR3. More information on the Gaia DR3 contents page. These data products are also created by Gaia DPAC Coordination Unit 4. Presentations for all data products are available from the GREAT website.

 

Gaia DR3: Solar system objects

In Gaia's second data release a set of 14,099 known asteroids were published. In Gaia DR3, it is expected that information on about 150,000 solar system objects is released, this set will contain some other objects next to asteroids. For the first time, also reflectance spectra will be published for a subset of solar system objects. Check out the below sources for some information on Gaia asteroids in Gaia Data Release 2:

 

Update to the Gaia release scenario page

Find more information on all upcoming releases from the Gaia release scenario page. Gaia DR3 is expected in the second quarter of 2022 and covers 34 months of data. Gaia DR4 will be based on 66 months of data. Pending further approvals of mission extensions additional release(s) will take place. Currently Gaia has been firmly extended until the end of 2022 with an indicative approval until the end of 2025. Gaia DR5 is currently anticipated to contain all collected data.

 

Gaia Archive

The Gaia Archive has been upgraded on Monday 18 October to version 2.13. More information on the Gaia Archive releases can be found from the Gaia Archive release notes.

Please be aware that this weekend, on Saturday 30 October, the Gaia Archive is expected to be down for sure between 08:00 and 22:00 CEST due to maintenance to local servers. A warning has been placed onto the Gaia Archive service that the service can be intermittently down between 29 October afternoon CEST and 2 November morning CET. The teams involved are doing their best to minimize the impact.

 

Gaps in Gaia EDR3 and Gaia DR3 data

A description and overview of gaps in the data stream that underlies the Gaia data products is given now also for Gaia EDR3 and Gaia DR3. More information on auxiliary data provided for Gaia can be found from the auxiliary data webpage.

 

ESA Archival Research visitor programme

To increase the scientific return from its space science missions, the European Space Agency (ESA) welcomes applications from scientists interested in pursuing research projects based on data publicly available in the ESA Space Science Archives.

The ESA Archival Research Visitor Programme is open to scientists at all career levels, affiliated with institutes in ESA Member States and Collaborating States. Early-career scientists (within 10 yeras of the PhD) are particularly encouraged to apply. Applications by PhD students are also welcome.

During their stay, visiting scientists will have access to archives and mission specialists for help with the retrieval, calibration, and analysis of archival data. In principle, all areas of space research covered by ESA science missions can be supported.

Residence lasts typically between one and three months, also distributed over multiple visits. Research projects can be carriedout at ESAC (Madrid, Spain) aand at ESTEC (Noordwijk, The Netherlands). To offset the expenses incurred by visitors, ESA covers travel costs from and to the home institution and provides support for lodging expenses and meals.

Applications received before 1 November 2021 will be considered for visits in spring/summer 2022.

For further details, please refer to the visitor programme webpages.

 

Gaia DR2 known issue: incorrect value of G_transit_n_obs in raw format

A new known issue has been published for Gaia DR2 called "Photometry: incorrect value of G_transit_n_obs in raw format", the information is given here for convenience.

The field "g_transit_n_obs" provided in the RAW-format epoch photometry is incorrectly reporting the number of AF CCDs that has been used to calculate "g_transit_flux". In the published Gaia Data Release 2 data, the sum of AF1-AF9 CCDs for which both "photometry_flag_afX_unavailable" and "photometry_flag_afX_reject" were not set has been used (X = 1 to 9). However, the correct number should use only the sum of AF1-AF9 CCDs with "photometry_flag_afX_unavailable" = false (i.e., not set). The flag "photometry_flag_afX_reject" refers only to the accumulated mean flux available in "gaia_source.phot_g_mean_flux".

 

PhD theses related to Gaia

A list of PhD theses related to Gaia can be found on this page. Recent additions to this page are given below:

 

 

Gaia newsletter #16

 

This newsletter gives an update on new Gaia EDR3 pages and summarizes the stories that were published at the Gaia Cosmos and ESA Science websites.

 

Gaia EDR3 known issues

There are currently two known issues published for Gaia's Early Data Release 3:

The first known issue was published already at the release day. The newest known issue provides a clarification on the G-band corrections for Gaia Early Data Release 3. A corrigendum to the Gaia EDR3 main release paper can be found from the Gaia EDR3 papers page as well.

 

Gaia EDR3 extinction law

From the webpage for the auxiliary data, a set of coefficients can be found which allows to compute the Gaia EDR3 extinction law.

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

 

Gaia stories by ESA Science

 

Gaia EDR3 cross-matches

More information on the Gaia EDR3 cross-matches can be obtained from the Gaia Data Release Documentation. The following catalogues are matched with Gaia EDR3: Pan-STARRS1 DR1, SkyMapper DR2, SDSS DR13, URAT1, Tycho2 merged with TDSC, Hipparcos-2, 2MASS PSC XSC, AllWISE, APASS DR9, GSC 2.3 and RAVE DR5. Cross-matches are also available from the bulk download section.

More information on how to combine data with external catalogues can be found from these help pages.

 

Gaia EDR3 papers & Documentation

An overview of all processing papers for Gaia EDR3 can be found here, including links to the ArXiv preprints and the publications. Gaia EDR3 Documentation version 1.1 has been published.

 

Did you know?

  • An overview of news items from the Gaia mission can be found from the news page?
  • The 2021 Lodewijk Woltjer Lecture has been awarded to Prof. Amina Helmi of the University of Groningen?
  • A new collection inspired on Gaia can be found from the ESA space on demand shop?
  • A list of Gaia related publications can be found from this page?
  • You can find some Gaia educational materials here?

 

Gaia-TESS collaboration kicks off

TESS (Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite) is a NASA space mission surveying nearby bright stars in search of extrasolar planets, pushing ahead the fast-growing and exciting study of planets outside our solar system. TESS finds planets that cross our line of sight to their host stars, causing a periodic dimming of the observed light of the system. TESS is issuing a monthly list of newly discovered candidates of transiting exoplanets. However, TESS angular resolution allows light of each target star to be blended with the light from nearby sources. Therefore, follow-up photometric observations are required in order to exclude apparent transits caused by blending with nearby eclipsing binary stars, before further confirmation observations should be performed.

The Gaia mission has been accumulating brightness measurements of billions of stars, with a high angular resolution, producing distinct brightness time series for all sources whose light might be blended with the TESS planet-host candidate. Therefore, Gaia can quickly identify false positive candidates and even confirm true planets in some cases, synergistically combining the capabilities of two of the astronomical space flagships of the USA and Europe – TESS and Gaia.

The analysis of the Gaia relevant data is done at Tel Aviv University by Aviad Panahi, Tsevi Mazeh and Shay Zucker as members of the Gaia DPAC/CU7 team, and the results are reported to the TESS Quick Look Pipeline manager at MIT and TESS Follow-up Observing Program Working Group (TFOPWG) coordinator.

 

Star Clusters: the Gaia Revolution

On 5-7 October 2021, the EU Cost Action MW-Gaia will organise the online workshop: "Star Clusters: the Gaia revolution". The joint WG1/WG2 workshop will cover various topics such as stellar association, open clusters in the Milky Way disc, globular clusters and streams in the halo, as well as synergies between Gaia and other missions and observational campaign. Registration and abstract submission are open now. More information on this workshop can be found from the conference website.

 

Gaia symposium at the EAS meeting

At the EAS Gaia symposium in June an extensive preview of Gaia Data Release 3 was given. Slides of the presentations given at this symposium can be found here.

 

Gravitational Waves and the GaiaX Alert stream experiment

Interested in Gravitational Waves? In the future Gaia intends to help out with the follow up of the Gravitational Wave triggers. An experiment with a dedicated GaiaX Alert stream has been started on 1 September 2021 and lasted four weeks. Find the full news item with all details here.

 

Vacancies for Research Fellowships in Space Science

The opportunities for Research Fellowships in Space Science have been announced at the ESA Careers website. Approximately 12 ESA Fellowships will be offered this year in Space Science. Deadline for applications is 27 September 2021.

 

Vacancy for a postdoc in the Gaia Unlimited Project

A vacancy for a post-doctoral research position opens up at the University of Torino in Italy to work on the GaiaUnlimited Project. More information on the Gaia Cosmos home. Deadline for the application is 1 November 2021.

Gaia newsletter #15

 

Gaia's early data release 3 is out and is being used by all of you with much enthusiasm! This newsletter summarizes the data release and some news items that could be of interest to you.

 

3 December - Gaia EDR3 release day

Gaia Early Data Release 3 was announced to the public from many of our Gaia DPAC institutes. Most of these press briefings and outreach talks were recorded and are now available to you through the Gaia EDR3 events page. Apart from watching the recorded events, also the slides and/or seperate recorded presentations that were used at some of the events are now available to you from this same events page.

 

Documentation

Along with the release of the data, a lot of information is provided to help you understand the data. First of all, an extensive data release documentation has been written which explains the treatment of the data from its raw form (as coming down from the spacecraft) to its scienfitic form (as provided with the Gaia release). The data release documentation is both available online as well as from a downloadable PDF file.

Complementary to the data release documentation is a set of data release papers. The main paper "Gaia Early Data Release 3: Summary of the contents and survey properties" gives an overview of this data release and we ask you to please cite this paper when making use of Gaia Early Data Release 3. More information on Gaia's credit and citation guidelines for this specific release can be found here.  The processing papers describe in further detail specific aspects of the calibration, validation and different pipelines used to process the data. Please be aware of some accompanying source code that comes along with the papers.

Next to the data release documentation and the processing papers, there is a set of 4 performance verification papers, which give an overview of the science potential of this release. Without going into in-depth analysis, a short introduction is given in a few selected science topics to demonstrate the scientific quality of the data. The following topics are addressed:

An overview on the available documentation for Gaia Early Data Release 3 is available from this page.

 

Gaia EDR3 stories

A set of stories highlighting the people involved in the processing as well as the topics of the performance verification papers has been published on the home of the Gaia scientific community: Gaia Cosmos. Find direct links to each of these stories below. The page with Questions&Answers contains a set of very short videos where our Gaia DPAC members answer some questions on Gaia Early Data Release 3.

 

Press releases on Gaia Early Data Release 3

Both ESA and Gaia DPAC institutes prepared press releases to announce Gaia's newest catalogue. A selection of some of these press releases can be found here:

 

Gaia EDR3 on SCI.ESA.INT

 

Further stories on Gaia Cosmos

 

Help with the Gaia data

Find your way to our help pages which contain information on how to extract data for a single source, a list of sources or using the advanced access through ADQL. Extensive information is given on how to write an ADQL query and to help out with the more complex queries involving cross-matches. Tutorials are provided both for access via the user interface as well as for the programmatic access through command line or using the python astroquery package. These help pages are regularly updated based on questions received at the Gaia Helpdesk. If you cannot find your answer by browsing through the different help topics, feel free to get in touch with us through the Gaia helpdesk, either by email of by submitting a ticket into our ticketing system.

The help pages also contain a list of frequently asked questions, as well as information on how to credit and cite the Gaia data release. At the ESAC Gaia EDR3 event the last few presentations focused on the Gaia Archive and on the different community resources available. Both of these presentations are also available from the events page.

 

Cross-matches

Soon now also the last cross-matches with external catalogues will be provided. More information on the cross-matches to be expected can be found here.

 

ESA YGT opportunities

ESA has announced its new Young Graduate Traineeship (YGT) opportunities. Among the list of 2021 YGT opportunities, one position focuses on the Gaia mission, and more details on this specific position can be found here.

 

EAS meeting 2021 - Gaia: The (2) Billion Star Galaxy Census: The Science of EDR3 and the promise of DR3

Registration and abstract submission is now open for the EAS 2021 meeting 28 June - 2 July 2021. As part of the EAS meeting, a two day MW-Gaia / GREAT/ Gaia Symposium will be held on 28-29 June 2021. The programme focuses on science highlights from Gaia EDR3, a status overview on Gaia / Gaia Archive / MW-Gaia / Gaia Unlimited and ground-based synergies with Gaia. As in previous years the programme will consist largely of contributed talks. You are encouraged to submit your abstract (submit to Symposium S15) for the meeting with abstracts from early stage researchers especially welcome. Abstract deadline is 2 March 2021.

 

The impact of the Gaia reference frame on space navigation

A news item was published on how precise maps of millions of bright quasars show our place in the cosmos as never before. On 24 November a Science Magazine article describes the impact of the Gaia reference frame on navigation in space.

 

Build your own mini-Gaia

Build a mini-Gaia with these building instructions (provided thanks to Willliam Taylor). You can find example pictures of the mini-Gaia model here.

 

Grand Prize 2020 for Gaia

We are proud to let you know that at its last session on 25 September, the Air and Space Academy (AAE) has awarded its Grand Prize 2020 to Anthony Brown, astronomer at the Leiden Observatory, and Vincent Poinsignon, Gaia satellite project manager at Airbus Defence & Space, for their decisive contribution to the success of the scientific space mission of the Gaia satellite.

 

 

Gaia newsletter #14

 

Less than a week to go to Gaia Early Data Release 3. Here is a compilation of the latest news for you!

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - papers

The titles of both the summary paper, processing papers and the performance verification papers can be found now on a dedicated page for the Gaia EDR3 papers.

 

Gaia Archive Downtime from 1 December to release day

The Gaia Archive is getting ready for the new release of Gaia data, and was upgraded to version 2.10 on 12 November. On 1 December 2020, the Gaia Archive will go down at 12:00 CET to allow for the final preparations of the Gaia Early Data Release 3 which will come online on 3 December 2020 at 12:00 CET.

The new version of the Gaia Archive will contain all new tables related to the Gaia EDR3 release and some small improvements on the landing page and tabs. Also the query examples will be updated to reflect Gaia EDR3. The help pages will contain a few new tutorials.

 

Gaia EDR3 contents page updated

The Gaia EDR3 contents page has been updated with some more details on the Gaia EDR3 catalogue. The Gaia EDR3 catalogue will contain 1,811,709,771 sources.

 

Where to get the data?

The data will become available from the Gaia Archive and from its partner data centres, which are

  • Gaia Archive at the ESAC Science Data Centre (ESDC)
  • Centre de Données astronomiques de Strasbourg (CDS)
  • ASI Space Science Data Center (SSDC) (SSDC)
  • Astronomisches Rechen-Institut (ARI)
  • Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (AIP)

A download of the full catalogue is available. For the full catalogue download, go to the Gaia Archive homepage and check out the Download button.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Events

Gaia DPAC organises virtual events in many languages and with different formats, ranging from press briefings, scientific presentations to public outreach talks. Have a look at this webpage for the complete overview.

Events typically start around 10:00 AM CET and are spread throughout the day. With each event is given the language and targeted public, making it a bit easier to decide which one to join.

The full list of institutes involved in Gaia data releases can be found here.

 

Gaia EDR3 source code

Some Python source code accompanies the Gaia EDR3 papers. The description of the code and info on where to find the code is available from this page.

 

ESA internship opportunities

A new round of ESA internship opportunities are now available at the ESA Careers website. Check out the internships in the Directorate of Science, including internships making use of Gaia Mission data! The internships can be done remotely this time.

 

ESA publications for the general public

 

  • Gaia's Milky Way discoveries

A selection of interesting Milky Way discoveries by Gaia can be found here. The video was posted by ESA yesterday.

  • Background article on Gaia: How does Gaia study the Milky Way?

Background reading on astrometry, photometry and spectroscopy by Gaia, with short explanations on the parallax and proper motions.

 

 

Gaia newsletter #13

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 is approaching! This newsletter brings some updates on the material that has been published to help out preparing for Gaia EDR3.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Data Model

On 15 September the draft version of the Gaia Early Data Release 3 data model has been published on Gaia Cosmos. It can be found from the Gaia EDR3 contents page, as well as from the Gaia EDR3 overview page.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Passbands

Please be aware that the photometric system for the G, GBP, and GRP bands in Gaia EDR3 is different from the photometric system as used in Gaia DR2 and Gaia DR1. The Gaia EDR3 passbands have been published on 29 October and can be found here for download.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Events

Events are planned to present Gaia Early Data Release 3 to the public. Due to the pandemic, these events will be planned mostly (if not all) as online events on 3 December 2020 from 10:00 AM CET onwards. More information on the Gaia EDR3 events will follow soon, and will be made available through the Gaia EDR3 overview page.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Summary of announcements

  • The date for our Gaia EDR3 release has been fixed to 3 December 2020, and data will be released at 12:00 CET from the Gaia Archive and its partner data centres.
  • A description of the contents of Gaia EDR3 was published in July. More details will be published soon now.
  • Make sure to check the Gaia EDR3 known issues page on 3 December as well. On this page, we will publish more details on specific issues found with data which could be useful to users.
  • An overview page for Gaia EDR3 helps you find your way to all relevant info on the upcoming release.

 

Falling Walls nomination for Anthony Brown

We are happy to announce that Anthony Brown, head of the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC), was selected as a finalist in the category of physical sciences for the Falling Walls Conference, which will be held remotely this year between 1 and 10 November. Anthony Brown was nominated by the University of Heidelberg for breaking the walls in astronomy. Gaia Data Release 2 has led to a revolution on astronomy, with the Gaia data being of use to practically all fields of astronomy.

Anthony stresses that the processing and preparation of Gaia data releases is a joint effort by Gaia DPAC, and that this recognition is for the entire Gaia DPAC team.

 

Stories on Gaia Cosmos

 

Stories on the ESA Portal

 

Lennart Lindegren and Jackie Faherty awarded prizes for dynamical astronomy

We are pleased to announce that Lennart Lindegren and Jackie Faherty were awarded prizes by the American Astronomical Society (AAS) Division on Dynamical Astronomy (DDA). Lennart was awarded the 2020 Dirk Bouwer Career Award, and Jackie Faherty won the 2020 Vera Rubin Early Career Prize. Find more information on the prizes and this news here ​​​​​​.

 

International Astronomical Union - focus meeting 7

At the IAU General Assembly XXXI in Busan, Rep. of Korea, a focus meeting will be held on "Astrometry for 21st century astronomy". The IAU General Assembly will take place from 16 to 27 August 2021. The precise dates for the Focus Meeting 7 will be announced later.

 

Did you know…

 

Vacancies

Interested in a postdoc or research fellowship on Gaia? Check out the Gaia vacancies. Currently, the Institute of Cosmos Sciences of the University of Barcelona is seeking a Postdoctoral fellow in Structure and Evolution of the Milky Way galaxy through Gaia for its Unit of Excellence Maria de Maeztu postdoctoral positions. Find more information on this position in the attached document. Also ESA has opportunities, but then for trainees linked to its science missions, including Gaia. More information can be found here.

 

Mission extension

Gaia's mission extension for the period from 1 January 2021 to 31 December 2022 has been confirmed at the SPC meeting on 1 October 2020. At this meeting also an indicative extension was given for Gaia from 1 January 2023 to 31 December 2025. Gaia was launched on 19 December 2013 and started its operational life in July 2014.

 

 

Gaia newsletter #12

 

This Gaia Newsletter is dedicated to our upcoming Gaia Early Data Release 3, for which a release date has been set now. Count down with us to 3 December 2020!

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Release day

The date for our Gaia EDR3 release has been fixed to 3 December 2020, as announced on 7 September. On the release day, the Gaia EDR3 data will become available at 12:00 CET from the Gaia Archive and its partner data centres. To celebrate the release of this new catalogue, several events are being planned at the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC) institutes. More details on the events will be announced closer to the release date.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Documentation

All data for the Gaia EDR3 catalogue has been produced now and the validation is currently underway. Gaia DPAC is currently busy documenting the processing and the creation of the catalogue. Details on the data processing will become available in the Gaia Data Release Documentation and the Gaia Early Data Release processing papers. Some performance verification papers are under preparation as well, which will give an indication of the science potential of the data. The titles for the Gaia EDR3 papers will be announced soon. A description of the contents of Gaia EDR3 was published in July.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Contents

Gaia EDR3 is expected to contain about 1,8 billion stars, with parallaxes expected to be 20% more precise and proper motions a factor two more precise than Gaia DR2. With Gaia EDR3, the sources come with more precise brightness measurements, as well as improved BP and RP photometry. In the coming months further details to the expected contents will be provided.

 

Gaia Early Data Release 3 - Overview page

An overview page for Gaia Early Data Release 3 is now in place. It will serve as a starting point to lead you to the most important information on Gaia EDR3. You can count down with us to the Gaia EDR3 release.

 

Stories that appeared on Gaia Cosmos, home of the Gaia scientific community

 

Full Gaia Data Release 3 - expected timing

Although the pandemic continues to complicate and slow down the progress toward Gaia DR3, the release is expected to take place during the first half of 2022.

While Gaia EDR3 brings improved positions, parallaxes, proper motions, brightnesses and BP+RP photometry, the full Gaia DR3 catalogue will bring on top of that:

  • more, more accurate, and more precise mean radial velocities,
  • more, more accurate, and more precise classifications of variable stars, of more types of variable stars,
  • more, more accurate, and more precise astrophysical parameters,
  • more, more accurate, and more precise asteroid information,

but also for the first time:

  • non single stars
  • extended objects and quasars
  • BP/RP/RVS spectra for a subset of the sources
  • photometric time series for *all* sources located in an area of the sky around the Andromeda galaxy

For more details on the contents of Gaia DR3, check out the Gaia Data Release page.

 

Did you know…

  • that the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium currently consists of 431 people? Some of them work full time on Gaia, but many devote part of their time to Gaia and part of their time to other projects.
  • that Gaia DPAC consists of 9 coordination units, each with their own tasks?
  • that Gaia DPAC makes use of 6 data processing centres?
  • that next to the Gaia Archive, there are 4 partner data centres?
  • that our Gaia Mission Manager, Fred Jansen, will step down on 1 October? We wish to say thanks to Fred for his great contribution to the Gaia Mission. Uwe Lammers, our Gaia Science Operations Manager will take over the Mission Manager duties. We are happy that Fred will remain active in Gaia as a regular DPAC member.

Gaia newsletter #11

 

The Gaia collaboration is currently involved in the production of Early Data Release 3, Data Release 3 and Data Release 4. All raw data for these releases has been downloaded from the spacecraft by now, while Gaia continues gathering data for the mission extension release.

Gaia Early Data Release 3 is on track for a release end of 2020 with final preparations kicking in. Paper drafts are being finished, documentation chapters are being written and reviewed and preparations for the release day have started. A release date will be announced soon now.

The processing for Gaia Data Release 3 is on full throttle, with data being pushed through the various pipelines as we speak. While we prepare for more and more advanced data products, the interfaces between the various teams and pipelines have become quite complex. Missing out on meetings in person due to the COVID-19 crisis adds upon these complications.

The first pipelines of the software chain for Gaia Data Release 4 have started running now. Gaia DR4 will cover a period of 66 months, which is the full nominal mission period plus an additional 6 months.

While our Gaia DPAC scientists and engineers prepare the upcoming Gaia data releases, please remember to give some credit to their efforts to make these catalogues available to you. You can find here our credit and citation guidelines.

 

Preliminary info on Gaia EDR3 contents

A description is given of the expected contents of Gaia's Early Data Release 3 on this page. The Gaia EDR3 catalogue will be based on 34 months of data collection, and is expected to contain about 1.8 billion stars. Gaia EDR3 is on track for a release end of 2020. A more exact release date will be announced early September.

 

Gaia Archive upgrades

On Monday 11 May, Gaia Archive version 2.8 has been deployed. Apart from some fixes, there is an update to the ADQL supported functions and an improvement with respect to the interoperability with VO tools. Tomorrow, the Gaia Archive will upgrade to version 2.9, which will cause a short downtime between 09:00 and 11:00 CEST. The release notes will provide you with more details.

 

Did you know…

  • that we will publish a draft data model for Gaia Early Data Release 3 in advance of the release?
  • that Gaia by now has been scanning the sky for about 3,1 million minutes, and managed to make:
    • more than 1,5 trillion astrometric CCD measurements
    • more than 309 billion photometric CCD measurements
    • more than 30 billion spectroscopic CCD measurements​​​​​​​
    of the 155 billion times sources crossed the focal plane in that time period?
  • ​​​​​that this means that Gaia manages to make a whopping:
    • 480,000 astrometric CCD measurements per minute
    • 97,000 photometric CCD measurements per minute
    • 9,500 spectroscopic CCD measurements per minute
    of the more than 48,000 times sources cross the focal plane on average in a minute?
  • that Gaia EDR3 proper motions are typically a factor 2 better than the Gaia DR2 proper motions?
  • that the astrometric quality indicator (RUWE) will be provided along in the Gaia EDR3 source table, so that cross-matching with an external RUWE table can be avoided from Gaia EDR3 onwards?
  • that the expected size of the downloadable Gaia EDR3 catalogue will be about 1.3 TB?
  • you can find here a podcast interview with Anthony Brown?

 

Gaps in Gaia data

A description and overview of gaps in the data stream that underlies the Gaia DR2 data products can be found here.

 

Gaia DR2's second anniversary

On 25 April 2020 the Gaia Mission celebrated the second anniversary of Gaia Data Release 2. The Gaia catalogues have been embraced by many scientists across the world. We are proud of the many papers that appeared using our latest release, Gaia DR2. In two years time, almost 3000 refereed papers based on Gaia Data Release 2 were published. That amounts on average to 4 papers per day. Thank you for using our data with so much enthusiasm! In the meantime, the ESA Gaia teams and Gaia DPAC are continuously working towards next data releases. 

 

Latest ESA press releases on Gaia

  • Galactic crash may have triggered solar system formation - The formation of the Sun, the Solar System and the subsequent emergence of life on Earth may be a consequence of a collision between our galaxy, the Milky Way, and a smaller galaxy called Sagittarius, discovered in the 1990s to be orbiting our galactic home. Read more here.​​​​​​​
  • ESA Explores risky asteroids with Astronomer Marco Micheli: Podcast - listen here.
  • Gaia revolutionises asteroid tracking - ESA’s Gaia space observatory is an ambitious mission to construct a three-dimensional map of our galaxy by making high-precision measurements of over one billion stars. However, on its journey to map distant suns, Gaia is revolutionising a field much closer to home. By accurately mapping the stars, it is helping researchers track down lost asteroids. Read more here.

 

Stories that appeared on Gaia Cosmos, home of the Gaia scientific community

 

Gaia session at the European Astronomical Society annual meeting

​​​​​​​This year the annual meeting of the European Astronomical Society went virtual. One of the symposia was dedicated to Gaia: The (two) billion star galaxy census: The promise of (E)DR3 and ground-based synergies. Interested to check the slides of this session? Go to the GREAT page to check them out. Some presentations you may be particularly interested in: Gaia mission status as given by our Gaia Project Scientist Timo Prusti, Gaia data processing status and the promise of Gaia EDR3 as given by our Gaia DPAC chair Anthony Brown and What to expect from Gaia (E)DR3: photometry and low resolution spectra as given by Francesca De Angeli, lead of the Data Processing Center at the Institute of Astronomy in Cambridge, UK.

 

Update to the Gaia DR2 known issues

A new item on the orientation and rotation of the Gaia DR2 reference frame for bright objects has been added to the Gaia DR2 known issues to help you guide to the corrections available. Also the Gaia DR2 primer has been updated to reflect this information.

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Gaia newsletter #10

 

The Gaia collaboration is currently involved in the production of Early Data Release 3, Data Release 3 and Data Release 4. While the data for Gaia Early Data Release 3 has been processed, it is currently being validated, documented and structured to appear in the Gaia Archive. In parallel the data is being processed further to create all data products to be released in Gaia Data Release 3.

At the same time, the Gaia spacecraft has just finished gathering the data that will be used for the release covering the full nominal mission plus the first 6 months of the mission extension (so covering a period of 66 months). This data will soon start running through the first pipelines in our software chain.

These preparations for the data releases rely on a tight collaboration of many scientists and computer engineers across Europe and with the current measures in place to contain and mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 virus, a delay of Gaia (E)DR3 is therefore announced, as you can read in the below news item.

 

Delay of Gaia (E)DR3

The COVID-19 virus is spreading across the globe and its impact is also felt in the Gaia collaboration. The data processing effort is distributed over many European countries which adopt different approaches to fight the pandemic. In some countries, restrictions are very severe and the situation is rapidly changing towards more restrictions everywhere.

The schedule towards Gaia (E)DR3 is already affected and more delays can be anticipated. Those scientists and computer engineers in the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium (DPAC) who can work are now mostly working from home, but their priority is their own health and that of their families. Furthermore, resolving problems with computer hardware takes longer than usual due to the absence of personnel on operational sites.

Therefore, schedule delays of both Gaia Early DR3 and Gaia DR3 are inevitable, but can only be quantified after more clarity of the overall situation has been achieved. As soon as possible, a new schedule for the releases will be announced. While data processing has slowed down, the good news is that Gaia continues to collect valuable science data. With this note we wish everyone good health in the coming times.

 

Gaia DPAC consortium meeting moved to 2021

Also due to the COVID-19 virus, the Gaia DPAC consortium meeting that was planned to take place in March 2020 was replaced with an on-line meeting with a new physical meeting planned for March 2021.

 

Gaia DR2 primer

The Gaia DR2 primer contains "Everything you wish you had known before you started working with Gaia Data Release 2". Several updates were performed to this guide and the latest version, version 1.4, is available for download here as well as from the Gaia Cosmos homepage.

 

Latest ESA press releases on Gaia science

  • Milky Way's warp caused by Galactic collision, Gaia suggests - Astronomers have pondered for years why our galaxy, the Milky Way, is warped. Data from ESA's star-mapping satellite Gaia suggest the distortion might be caused by an ongoing collision with another, smaller, galaxy, which sends ripples through the galactic disc like a rock thrown into water. Further reading here.
  • Global Gaia campaign reveals secrets of stellar pair - A 500-day global observation campaign spearheaded more than three years ago by ESA’s galaxy-mapping powerhouse Gaia has provided unprecedented insights into the binary system of stars that caused an unusual brightening of an even more distant star. Further reading here.

 

Stories that appeared on Gaia Cosmos, home of the Gaia scientific community

 

Gaia Archive upgraded to HTTPS

Please be aware that since 3 February 2020, the Gaia Archive is only served using HTTPS. This is done in order to improve security. Requests to the old HTTP access point are automatically redirected.

However, existing scripts may fail to be rerouted. You may, for example, experience problems with old astroquery versions of hard coded URLs. Please make sure to update astroquery, or replace HTTP by HTTPS in your code when needed. Some examples can be found in the Gaia Archive Help —> Command line access. Please contact the Gaia Helpdesk if you still experience problems.

 

Did you know…

  • that you can keep up to date as well by following our @ESAGaia twitter channel?
  • that the Gaia Photometric Science Alerts  publishes any potentially interesting outburst or dimming as seen in the Gaia Data to allow for a quick follow-up for interested scientists.
  • that the Gaia Photometric Science Alerts already published more than 800 alerts this year?
  • there is also a follow-up opportunity for Solar System Objects? Check out the Gaia FUN-SSO network.

 

Updates to the Gaia DR2 known issues page

On 15 January 2020 a new topic was added to our Gaia DR2 known issues page: Cross-match: Gaia DR1 neighbours close to high proper motion Gaia DR2 objects. This update contains information on missing objects in the neighbourhood cross-match table with Gaia DR1 sources. Please read through the new known issue carefully to see if it affects how you use Gaia data.

 

Gaia newsletter #9

 

Find below a compilation of the latest news on the Gaia mission since September.

 

Update to the Gaia data release scenario

Data processing toward Gaia (E)DR3 continues to progress within the announced schedule. However, to ensure sufficient quality of the quasars and extended objects results, an additional processing run has to be scheduled moving their outcome from Gaia EDR3 to Gaia DR3.

Another modification concerns a new data product. A pencil beam survey with (integrated) epoch photometry of all sources (variable and non-variable) will be added to Gaia DR3. The selected field is centred on the Andromeda Galaxy. The survey will be called the Gaia Andromeda Photometric Survey or GAPS.

The cone with 5.5-degree radius contains in total about 1 million sources both in M31 and the Milky Way. In order not to impact the release schedule, only a limited amount of explicit validation will be done on the pencil beam epoch photometry.

 

Gaia astronomical revolution

The Gaia Data Release 2 catalogue has been used extensively by astronomers across the world. About 3 to 4 papers per day appear based on the Gaia DR2 catalogue, touching many different topics. Watch here the video on Gaia’s astronomical revolution.

 

Gaia Archive upgraded to version 2.7

On 14 November the Gaia Archive was upgraded to a new version of Archive software, version 2.7. Please be aware that access methods to epoch photometry were upgraded as well with minor changes in the output format. Updates to your access scripts might be needed. The help pages were updated accordingly. More info on the latest release can be found from the release notes.

 

Gaia Archive upgrade to HTTPS

In order to comply with ESA security guidelines, the Gaia Archive will only be served using HTTPS starting from 1 February 2020. Requests to the old HTTP access point will be automatically redirected. However, existing scripts may fail to be rerouted. For example, you may experience problems with old astroquery versions or hard coded URLs. Please update astroquery, or replace HTTP by HTTPS in your code when needed. Some examples can be found in the Gaia Archive GUI Help => Command line access.

Please be aware that this upgrade also has an effect on the SAMP functionality. Due to a technical incompatibility of SAMP with HTTPS, the SAMP interface has been deactivated and the SAMP button has been removed from the query results interface.

Please contact the Gaia Helpdesk if you experience problems.

 

Release of the Gaia DR2 primer

The Gaia Helpdesk is happy to announce the release of the Gaia DR2 primer "Everything you wish you had known before you started working with Gaia Data Release 2". This primer collects all known information, tips and tricks, pitfalls, caveats, and recommendations relevant to Gaia’s second data release in one place and provides pointers to where more detailed information can be found. It is aimed at astronomers interested in using Gaia DR2 data, including undergraduates and PhD students.

 

Did you know…

 

Sampling of the Gaia scanning law now available

Since 12 December the sampling of the Gaia scanning law over the 22 month time period covered by the Gaia Data Release 2, including the Ecliptic Pole Scanning at the begin of the mission, is made available from the Gaia Auxiliary Data webpage. Note that this is the commanded attitude of the spacecraft, the actual attitude could deviate from it by up to about 30 arcsec. Find more details here.

 

Gaia’s latest stories:

Stories on the Gaia scientific community home:

Space in images / space in videos

 

Gaia Newsletter #8

 

With this newsletter we provide you with some updates on Gaia data release preparations, and draw your attention to a small update to the Gaia DR2 known issues page.

 

News from Gaia DPAC

The Gaia DPAC is preparing for the upcoming data releases: EDR3 and DR3. Following the creation of the source list and input data for the current processing cycle and the upgrades of various pipelines, the astrometric and photometric data processing are currently ongoing. The results thereof will be part of Gaia EDR3. The data processing pipelines for Gaia DR3 are undergoing extensive validation and will start their operations toward the end of this year. In parallel the Gaia Archive is being prepared to handle a larger volume of data as well as the new types of data expected for Gaia DR3.

Two developments should be noted. The planned publication of results on QSOs and Galaxies will be shifted from EDR3 to Gaia DR3. Gaia DR3 will be enriched with an additional data set consisting of the photometric time series for *all* sources located in a 5.5 degree radius field centred on the Andromeda galaxy. This data set, called the “Gaia Andromeda Photometric Survey” or GAPS, will serve as a taster for the publication of the photometric time series for all Gaia sources planned for Gaia DR4.

 

Update to the Gaia DR2 known issues page on systematic effects in Gaia DR2 parallaxes for very bright stars

Recently the Gaia DR2 known issues page was updated with a new topic on astrometry discussing the systematic effects in Gaia DR2 parallaxes for very bright stars. We draw your attention to the fact that in addition to larger uncertainties (as described in the topic "Astrometry: Considerations for the use of DR2 astrometry"), care should be taken when using the parallaxes of very bright (i.e. G < 5) stars, as they may have additional systematic errors due to calibration issues. A description of this topic can be found in this research note.

 

Did you know…

  • Gaia gathered by now more than 71,000 GB of science data?
  • there is a dedicated Python tutorial for Jupyter Notebook available from the help section of the Gaia Archive
  • the release notes of the Gaia Archive give you information on the updates in the documentation, Gaia data, and Gaia Archive functionalities.
  • Gaia data is served through the Gaia Archive and through four partner data centres. More information on the partner data centres can be found here.

 

ESA Research Fellowships in Space Science - deadline for applications is 1 October

ESA has announced an opportunity for post-doctoral research fellowships linked to its science missions, including Gaia. Deadline to submit applications is 1 October 2019. More details can be found on the ESA Faculty Page and on the ESA Careers webpage.

 

ESA Voyage 2050 workshop - registration closes on 30 September, 12:00 CET

Registration is open for the ESA Voyage 2050 workshop to be held at the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC), Calle Serrano 117, Madrid, Spain, from Tuesday 29 October to Thursday 31 October, 2019.

The focus of this workshop will be presentations and discussions related to the White Paper proposals that have been submitted by the broad scientific community for Voyage 2050, the next planning cycle of the ESA Science Programme. The White Papers are available for download.

Registration: to register your interest in attending the workshop, please complete the online registration form.

 

Paper publication statistics

While there were about 800 Gaia papers published in 2018, we are now already approaching 1000 published Gaia papers in 2019. This corresponds to about 3,5 paper per day. An overview of our selection of Gaia publications in peer-reviewed journals can be found here. To determine the amount of papers appearing using Gaia data, we make use of the citations given to the Gaia data release papers. You can help us find your paper when it makes use of Gaia data by following our credit and citation guidelines.

 

Gaia’s latest stories

Stories that appeared on the Gaia Scientific Community Home:

ESA press releases on Gaia science:

 

We are happy to see you are following our news on the Gaia mission and that you are using the Gaia data with great enthusiasm. Feel free to point interested people to the instructions on how to subscribe to the Gaia Newsletter. In case of any questions related to the Gaia mission or the Gaia data, the Gaia Helpdesk is there to help.

Gaia newsletter #7

 

Focus of this newsletter goes to the biggest operation for Gaia since launch, the Whitehead Eclipse Avoidance Manoeuvre, which marks the transition into the first mission extension for Gaia. Another highlight is the availability of RUWE data in the Gaia Archive. At last we would like to draw your attention to our request on PhD theses info for the Gaia mission.

 

RUWE data available in the Gaia Archive

The Gaia Archive now includes the RUWE data. A recipe was already provided through the Gaia DR2 known issues page, and some of the Gaia partner data centres already served the RUWE data along with the Gaia data. A decision was made in the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium to make an official release of the RUWE data along with the Gaia DR2 data, to ensure consistency of the RUWE data provided through ESA/Gaia/DPAC. The difference between the RUWE data as provided now through the Gaia Archive (and soon through the Gaia Partner Data Centres) and the RUWE data as was provided initially through for example the ARI partner data centre is reasonably small.

Currently the RUWE data can be found in a seperate table, but the RUWE data is expected to be provided in the gaia_source table from EDR3 onwards.

 

Gaia DR2 known issues: ASTROMETRY - Considerations for the use of DR2 astrometry

This topic was updated to reflect the availability of the RUWE data in the Gaia Archive. Also references can be found to the Data Release Documentation section discussing RUWE.

 

Send us your Gaia related Phd theses info

We would like to obtain an almost complete overview of PhD theses performed on Gaia related topics, theses either using Gaia data or theses discussing developments for the data processing of Gaia. This is valuable information for us to show the success of the mission in this area, and can help when we argue for mission extensions and continued funding of the Gaia mission. On this webpage more information can be found on how to share the information.

Please share with us also any Hipparcos related PhD theses. Information on how to send information on Hipparcos related PhD theses can be found on this webpage.

 

Whitehead Eclipse Avoidance Manoeuvre

On 16 July 2019 Gaia's biggest operation since launch was successfully performed, moving the Gaia mission from its nominal phase into its first mission extension.  Without any measures taken to change its orbit, the Gaia space observatory would have moved into the Earth's shadow in August and November this year. The Whitehead Eclipse Avoidance Manoeuvre was started by firing the thrusters of the spacecraft through commands sent up to the spacecraft by the Gaia mission flight control team from the ESA mission operations centre ESOC in Darmstadt, Germany. After a series of 9 thruster burns, the spacecraft was spinned up and brought into a so-called reverse-precession scanning law. More information on this manoeuvre and the transfer into mission extension can be read from this page here.

 

Latest Gaia Stories:

Stories that appeared on the Gaia Scientific Community website:

ESA releases on Gaia science:

 

Voyage 2050: call for white papers still open

ESA has issued two Calls for the Voyage 2050 long-term plan in the ESA Science Programme, covering the period 2035-2050. Similar to the previous plans - Horizon 2000, Horizon 2000 Plus, and Cosmic Vision - the definition of the Voyage 2050 plan relies on open community input and on broad peer review through a two-tiered committee structure, with a Senior Committee of 13 European scientists supported by a number of Topical Teams.

The community input will be gathered through a Call for White Papers. This call solicits ideas from the scientific community for the science themes that should be covered during the Voyage 2050 planning cycle. Any scientist or science team can submit a White Paper, with no limitation in terms of residence or nationality. All White Papers must be submitted in English. White Paper lead scientists cannot be members of the Topical Teams.

The deadline for receipt of White Papers is 5 August 2019, 12:00 (noon) CEST.

Further details on the Calls can be found at the Voyage 2050 website.

 

Gaia's future releases

Anthony Brown gave a look forward to future releases of Gaia at the 53rd ESLAB symposium. Gaia EDR3, the early release of Gaia DR3, is expected to be released in the third quarter of 2020 with a wealth of astrometric and photometric data, a release of QSOs and an update to the Gaia reference frame. Then, in the second half of 2021, one can expect to get the full release of Gaia DR3 with, for selected objects, data such as source classifications, radial velocities, photometric variabilities, minor planets, and non-single star behaviour. An overall precision gain of a factor of 1.2 is expected for Gaia DR3 with respect to Gaia DR2 (for instance for parallax uncertainties), with a factor of improvement of 1.9 for proper motions. Both Gaia EDR3 and Gaia DR3 will be based upon the same set of 34 months of raw satellite data.

More details are also given on expected contents and precision for Gaia Data Release 4 in our overview of the 53rd ESLAB symposium here.

A dedicated page is in place to keep you updated on upcoming releases.

 

Did you know…

  • Several Gaia DPAC members won prestigious prizes in the past months. Have a look at the news items of 2019.
  • Gaia is now on a so-called "reverse-precession scanning law" for the coming year.
  • We entered into Gaia's mission extension this week.
  • The Gaia Archive currently has about 5000 active IP addresses accessing the data per month. More can be read here.
  • The Gaia Data Processing and Analysis Consortium contains about 420 people spread across Europe, with some small contributions from countries outside of Europe.

 

Upcoming conferences on Gaia science

More Gaia related conferences, workshops or symposia can be found from our Gaia calendar! If you wish to advertise your conference or workshop related to the Gaia mission or Gaia data, you can let us know through the Gaia Helpdesk.

 

The Gaia Science Team

The members of the Gaia Science Team were all installed for another 3 years to advice ESA on all aspects related to the scientific performance and goals of Gaia. Find here an overview and picture of the Gaia Science Team.

 

Gaia Observation Forecast Tool

An updated version of the Gaia Observation Forecast Tool was recently released.

 

Follow up on the Gaia mission!

Check out the Gaia Scientific Community website to keep yourself up to date on developments for the Gaia data release or read the latest Gaia news stories on the ESA Science & Technology website dedicated to the Gaia mission. Always wanted to be the first to know the latest news? Then follow us on twitter: @ESAGaia.

Gaia newsletter #6

 

Focus of this newsletter goes to the Gaia DR2 known issues page and its latest update on photometry, as well as to the many Gaia science conferences that are organised this year. We would also like to draw your attention to the Voyage 2050 info from ESA.

 

Gaia DR2 known issues: Photometry - Systematic effects and response curves

The Gaia Data Release 2 photometry is affected by some systematic errors, as already mentioned by Evans et al. (2018) and Arenou et al. (2018). These effects include complex features for faint sources (G greater than about 17), likely caused by problems in the background calibration and contamination from nearby sources. For bright sources (G less than about 6), saturation causes systematic dependencies for which Evans et al. (2018) provide an empirical correction.

A systematic trend with magnitude has been detected in the G band at magnitudes brighter than about 16.5 by comparing Gaia DR2 data with synthetic photometry of CALSPEC sources (Casagrande & VandenBerg 2018, Weiler 2018). This trend is approximately linear. Maíz Apellániz & Weiler (2018), based on their own high-quality spectral library of 122 stars including CALSPEC, have proposed a linear correction of 3.2 +/- 0.3 mmag/mag over the interval 6 < G < 16 to adjust the Gaia G flux scale. However the trend could be more complex than this. Users should be careful that this correction is only valid in this magnitude range and should not be extrapolated, i.e. the value at G = 16 should be used for sources fainter than this.

Furthermore, a small systematic inconsistency in the BP photometric system has been spotted (Weiler 2018, Maíz Apellániz & Weiler 2018). This inconsistency is likely caused by insufficient convergence of the BP calibration for sources brighter than about G = 10.87. The inconsistency depends on colour, being more significant for sources bluer than about BP-RP = 0.5. Maíz Apellániz & Weiler (2018) mitigate this effect by providing two different BP response curves for the magnitude ranges brighter and fainter than G = 10.87.

As already mentioned in Evans et al. (2018), photometric passbands are not fully constrained by any given set of calibration sources (see Weiler 2018 for a detailed discussion). Synthetic photometry derived with such response curves for sources whose spectral energy distributions are not well represented by those calibration sources may be inaccurate.

Maíz Apellániz & Weiler (2018) have presented an alternative set of response curves for the Gaia DR2 photometric system, together with the corresponding zero points. These response curves are based on a library of high-quality spectra that include additional types of spectral energy distributions as compared to the Spectro-Photometric Standard Stars set used by the DPAC calibration (Pancino et al. 2012). These response curves, which must be used with their own zero points, need to be coupled with the suggested modification of the G flux scale. The combination of the suggested corrections and their set of response curves, by mitigating inconsistencies in the published photometry, allows the user to obtain more accurate synthetic photometry and is a valuable attempt to obtain the best possible results from the Gaia DR2 data.

A recipe for the use of Gaia DR2 photometry with the passbands by Maíz Apellániz & Weiler (2018) is available. More information can be found here.

 

Upcoming conferences on Gaia science

This year we see an explosion of conferences related to the Gaia mission and lots of presentations with results from Gaia data releases. An overview of the upcoming conferences can be found here. Some are summarised below:

ESLAB #53: the Gaia universe, 8-12 April 2019 @ ESTEC/The Netherlands

Next week the 53rd ESLAB symposium is devoted to Gaia science. The symposium with title “the Gaia universe” will be held at ESA/ESTEC in the Netherlands with topics ranging from stellar clusters to the impact to solar system objects and from dust maps to kinematics of the Milky Way. People interested can still register for the conference.

IAU Symposium 351 & MODEST-19 “Star Clusters: from the Milky Way to the Early Universe”, 27 - 31 May 2019 @ Bologna/Italy

The symposium intends to bring together astronomers with a broad variety of expertise for a comprehensive discussion on all the aspects of the study of stellar clusters. People interested can still register for the symposium.

STARRY final conference: Gaia’s view of Pre-Main Sequence Evolution - Linking the T Tauri and Herbig Ae/Be stars, 18 -21 June 2019 @ Leeds/UK

The conference focuses on the latest results on star formation, and tries to probe the links between T Tauri stars and Herbig Ae/Be stars in more detail by bringing the respective communities together. Abstract submission for this conference closes soon on 15 April 2019.

EWASS 2019 special sessions, 24-28 June 2019 @ Lyon/France

At EWASS 2019 special session SS28 is devoted to the Gaia status and Exploration Lab. Some presentations will be given on the Gaia mission and on Gaia Data Release 2, followed by some hands-on sessions where participants can work on science cases in the presence of Gaia experts. Two other special session focus on results from Gaia data: SS1 - Recovering an old sky: archive data at full accuracy by Gaia calibrations and SS22 - Stellar multiplicity in the Gaia era: where do we stand? People interested can still register for EWASS 2019.

More Gaia related conferences, workshops or symposia can be found from our Gaia calendar! If you wish to advertise your conference or workshop related to the Gaia mission or Gaia data, you can let us know through the Gaia Helpdesk.

 

Gaia related Phd theses

Anyone who finished his PhD thesis on a Gaia related topic is invited to share information on the thesis with us through this webpage (scroll to the bottom to enter details). Apart from providing a nice overview of produced work on the Gaia mission and on Gaia science, this information is also used when we argue for mission extensions and continued funding of the Gaia mission.

 

Refereed papers on the Gaia mission and Gaia science

We maintain a list of Gaia publications in peer-reviewed journals, which is available to everyone. We always welcome your suggestions on missing papers in the list. Additions, questions or corrections can be send to the Gaia Helpdesk. The list of refereed papers is used to produce some statistics on the science return of the Gaia mission, which are in turn used to support mission extension cases and any requests we make for continued funding of the Gaia mission and Gaia DPAC.

You too can help out with this, by adding the full citation and acknowledgement to your papers when using Gaia data. This is your way to show the data was important for your science.

We see a steady increase in the appearance of refereed papers using Gaia data. A total of 1739 refereed papers appeared since 2014, with about 800 refereed papers in 2018 and already more than 400 in the first quarter of 2019.

 

ESA-EAS exhibit in the EU parliament

From 4 to 8 March an exhibition of the Gaia mission and Gaia science results was organised at the European Parliament through a collaboration of ESA and the European Astronomical Society (EAS), and which was initiated by Clare Moody, member of the European Parliament. Sofia Feltzing, vice-president of EAS, started off the Gaia presentations on 7 April with an overview of Gaia science results: “Exploring the Milky Way: Gaia shines new light on our home in the universe”. Then Guenther Hasinger, ESA Director of Science, discussed the Gaia mission in view of the ESA Science programme: “Exploring the universe: synergies in the ESA Scientific Programme”. The exhibit was well-received at the European Parliament.

 

Latest Gaia Stories:

Stories that appeared on the Gaia Scientific Community website:

ESA releases on Gaia science:

 

Voyage 2050

ESA has issued two Calls for the Voyage 2050 long-term plan in the ESA Science Programme, covering the period 2035-2050. Similar to the previous plans - Horizon 2000, Horizon 2000 Plus, and Cosmic Vision - the definition of the Voyage 2050 plan relies on open community input and on broad peer review through a two-tiered committee structure, with a Senior Committee of 13 European scientists supported by a number of Topical Teams.

The community input will be gathered through a Call for White Papers. This call solicits ideas from the scientific community for the science themes that should be covered during the Voyage 2050 planning cycle. Any scientist or science team can submit a White Paper, with no limitation in terms of residence or nationality. All White Papers must be submitted in English. White Paper lead scientists cannot be members of the Topical Teams.

The deadline for receipt of White Papers is 5 August 2019, 12:00 (noon) CEST.

The Call for Membership of Topical Teams invites applications from scientists working in ESA Member States and with an interest in any topic in space science and in the relevant technologies. Space science is defined here in a broad sense, including the observation of the Universe, planetary science, solar science, study of the space environment, and scientific experiments that can be carried out from a spacecraft. The intention is to have a mix of experience represented in each Topical Team and early career scientists are specifically encourage to apply.

The deadline for receipts of applications is 6 May 2019, 12:00 (noon) CEST.

Further details on the Calls can be found at the Voyage 2050 website

 

Gaia Observation Forecast Tool

To aid astronomers in finding out when their targets will be observed by Gaia, the Gaia Observation Forecast Tool was developed some time ago. With the mission extension coming up, the tool has now been updated to provide also predictions beyond the end of the nominal mission.

 

Follow up on the Gaia mission!

Check out the Gaia Scientific Community website to keep yourself up to date on developments for the Gaia data release or read the latest Gaia news stories on the ESA Science & Technology website dedicated to the Gaia mission. Always wanted to be the first to know the latest news? Then follow us on twitter: @ESAGaia.

 

Did you know…

 

Gaia Newsletter #5

 

Highlights of this newsletter are the update to Gaia Data Release 3 and updates to the Gaia DR2 known issues page.

 

Gaia Data Release 3 split into two parts (announced on 29/01/2019)

The Gaia data processing toward Gaia DR3 is progressing at full speed. Although the schedule has stabilised, there are several uncertainties as many elements of the pipelines will see the real data in an operational environment for the first time. Taking the uncertainties into account brought the schedule of the next release toward the end of the earlier announced period of the first half of 2021.

To mitigate the impact on research, the Gaia DR3 will be split into two releases. This way, data that is ready earlier, will be released earlier. The early release, Gaia EDR3, contains astrometry and (integrated) photometry i.e. positions, parallaxes, proper motions, G-band fluxes as well as integrated red- (RP) and blue-band (BP) fluxes, all based on 34 months of data resulting in better accuracy with respect to Gaia DR2. First results for a predefined list of quasars and extended objects may also be included already in the early release. Gaia EDR3 will take place in Q3 of 2020.

Gaia DR3, which is anticipated to take place during the second half of 2021, will supersede Gaia EDR3. This means that the source list and any data published in Gaia EDR3 will not change, but is simply copied to Gaia DR3. Therefore Gaia DR3 is based on the same 34 months of mission data as for Gaia EDR3. The additional products include:
- radial velocities (significantly more due to fainter magnitude limit),
- BP/RP/RVS spectra (new products),
- Solar system data (significantly more sources included),
- variability information (significantly more objects due to longer time interval),
- results for non-single stars (new products), and
- astrophysical parameters (based on spectra).
The final inclusion of the products into Gaia DR3, as well as Gaia EDR3, is subject to successful validation.

 

Updates to the Gaia DR2 known issues

Overview of the current topics available from the Gaia DR2 known issues page:

Keep an eye out for this page! Any new known issues with the Gaia DR2 data will be published here.

 

ESLAB #53 - the Gaia universe: Programme announcement

From 8 to 12 April the 53rd ESLAB Symposium: "the Gaia universe" will be held at ESTEC. The full programme with talks, posters, and pitch sessions has been announced now. The conference will cover a wide range of science topics influenced by the use of Gaia data.

Registration to this conference is still open.

 

Updated functionality at the Gaia Archive

Our Gaia Archive team is continuously working to improve the functionalities of the Gaia Archive. From this February, all Gaia registered users have an upgraded user space giving room to 20GB. Apart from several improvements (which are described in the release notes), some new external catalogues, RAVE DR5 and APASS DR9, were included as well. Some tips and tricks for the Gaia Archive are summarised here. Several tutorials and data access recipes are available from the "Help" tab at the Gaia Archive.

 

Did you know…

 

Latest Gaia Stories:

Stories that appeared on the Gaia Scientific Community website:

ESA releases on Gaia science:

Other releases by ESA featuring Gaia:

 

Interested in communicating your Gaia science results?

We are interested to hear about your Gaia science results. Maybe you have an image or visualisation to share, or you might be working towards a paper to be published. On the “Communicate your Gaia science results page” you can find some guidelines on how to contact us and what type of information will be needed from you.

 

Gaia Mission or Gaia DPAC vacancies

Looking for a job? Gaia mission and Gaia DPAC vacancies are announced through our vacancies page. Currently open are a position for a software developer in the Gaia Barcelona Research team and a Gaia DPAC postdoc position related to crowded field (spectro-)photometric data processing at the Leiden University. Feel free to contact the Gaia Helpdesk to share your own Gaia vacancies at your institute.

 

Gaia Newsletter #4

 

With our 4th newsletter we want to ask your attention to the 53rd ESLAB conference which will  take place in April 2019 at ESTEC.

 

ESLAB #53 - the Gaia universe: CALL FOR ABSTRACTS

ESLAB #53 - the Gaia universe sent out a call for abstracts. Abstracts can be submitted before the deadline of 9 December 2018 end of day. We invite you to advertise this symposium at your institute with a printed poster.

 

ESLAB#53 - the Gaia universe : Registration is open

Registration for the 53rd ESLAB conference is open now. Early registration deadline is 20 January. Join us to learn all about the most recent Gaia science at the ESLAB, from 8 to 12 April at ESTEC, The Netherlands.

 

Citation of Gaia Data Release Documentation is now possible

Both Gaia Data Release 1 Documentation and Gaia Data Release 2 Documentation have been indexed by ADS. Information on the general citation and acknowledgement guidelines can be found here.

 

Gaia Data Access - Call for Gaia DR3 User Scenarios: we need your input!

With the recent release of Gaia DR2, the community is now asked to review the current set of Data Access Scenarios, and submit new data access scenarios, which will be considered for future implementation to support the development of the Gaia Archive system in the release of Gaia DR3 and the following Gaia DR4 release. The data release page gives an indication of the range of Gaia data products currently planned for release in the upcoming data releases.

Your help in describing how you wish to access the Gaia Data through the ESA Gaia archive and/or other access points is very valuable in helping the Gaia project develop and deploy the best possible interfaces and tools to help you, the science community, access and work with the Gaia data.

This call is open until December 2018. Please see the GREAT wiki page for details as to how to add new scenarios. Information on how to sign up are given on the home page under "A note on registering for the wiki”.

 

Did you know…

Did you know there is a tutorial available that discusses what to do if your query times out? This tutorial is available from the help tab at the Gaia Archive.
Did you know there is a page on auxiliary data? It gives access to the Gaia passbands and to some other data that was made available to the community.

 

Latest Gaia Stories:

Stories that appeard on the Gaia Scientific Community website:

 

Interested in communicating your Gaia science results?

We are interested to hear about your Gaia science results. Maybe you have an image or visualisation to share, or you might be working towards a paper to be published. On the “Communicate your Gaia science results page” you can find some guidelines on how to contact us and what type of information will be needed from you.

 

Gaia Mission or Gaia DPAC vacancies

Looking for a job? Gaia mission and Gaia DPAC vacancies are announced through our vacancies page. Currently open are Young Graduate Trainee Opportunities at ESA and a Gaia DPAC postdoc position. Feel free to contact the Gaia Helpdesk to share your own Gaia vacancies at your institute.

 

Gaia Newsletter #3

 

Gaia’s third newsletter is a very festive one: we celebrate the approved mission extension! Enjoy our update on Gaia science and the Gaia Mission.

 

Gaia mission extension

Today the ESA Science Programme Committee (SPC) confirmed the Gaia mission extension for mid-2019 to end of 2020 and has given an indicative extension for up to end of 2022. More information can be found here.

 

Additions to the Gaia Known Issues page

The Gaia DR2 Known Issues page now contains three subjects: “Astrometry: 2- versus 5-parameter solutions”, “ Astrometry: considerations for the use of DR2 astrometry” and “Cross-match: Hipparcos2”. Keep an eye out for this page as any newly found issue with the data will be posted here.

 

ESLAB #53 - the Gaia universe

ESLAB #53 - the Gaia universe sent out a call for abstracts. The website is now fully open and abstracts can be submitted before the deadline of 9 December 2018. We invite you to advertise this symposium at your institute with a printed poster. Registration opens this week. Early registration deadline is 20 January. We hope to hear about your Gaia science at the ESLAB, from 8 to 12 April at ESTEC, The Netherlands.

 

Gaia Data Access - Call for Gaia DR3 User Scenarios: we need your input!

With the recent release of Gaia DR2, the community is now asked to review the current set of Data Access Scenarios, and submit new data access scenarios, which will be considered for future implementation to support the development of the Gaia Archive system in the release of Gaia DR3 and the following Gaia DR4 release. The data release page gives an indication of the range of Gaia data products currently planned for release in the upcoming data releases.

Your help in describing how you wish to access the Gaia Data through the ESA Gaia archive and/or other access points is very valuable in helping the Gaia project develop and deploy the best possible interfaces and tools to help you, the science community, access and work with the Gaia data.

This call is open until December 2018. Please see the GREAT wiki page for details as to how to add new scenarios. Information on how to sign up are given on the home page under "A note on registering for the wiki”.

 

3rd DPAC Consortium meeting

From 1 to 5 October Gaia DPAC members gathered to discuss the ongoing preparations for Gaia data release 3 and to reflect on Gaia data release 2. About 175 of the 415 DPAC members attended the meeting and joined in on the many fruitful discussions on how to tackle the issues one encounters when dealing with big data and the processing of big data using a distributed group of people. During the meeting a memorable poster was created with signatures of all the DPAC attendants at the meeting. More info on this meeting can be found here: “3rd Gaia DPAC Consortium meeting”.

 

Interested in communicating your Gaia science results?

We are interested to hear about your Gaia science results. Maybe you have an image or visualisation to share, or you might be working towards a paper to be published. On the “Communicate your Gaia science results page” you can find some guidelines on how to contact us and what type of information will be needed from you.

 

Did you know…

Did you know that as of today, Gaia took more than 21 billion spectroscopic CCD measurements, more than 225 billion photometric CCD measurements and more than 1 trillion astrometric CCD measurements. The number of objects that passed through the Gaia focal plane already surpasses 113 billion, and more than 7 billion objects passed through the RVS instrument. Interested to follow up on some Gaia numbers? Check out our mission numbers page.
Did you know that Gaia sent out more than 100 photometric science alerts in November alone on supernovae, transients, flaring stars and more, interesting for following-up with other observatories. More information can be found on the Gaia Photometric Science Alerts webpage.
Did you know that Gaia also sends out alerts on Solar System objects? These are distributed by the Gaia Follow-Up Network for Solar System Objects (Gaia-FUN-SSO). A total of more than 3400 alerts have been sent out since the first trigger was announced.

 

Gaia Mission or Gaia DPAC vacancies

Looking for a job? Gaia mission and Gaia DPAC vacancies are announced through our vacancies page. Feel free to contact the Gaia Helpdesk to share your own Gaia vacancies at your institute.

 

Latest Gaia Stories:

Gaia hints at our Galaxy’s turbulent life” (ESA Science & Technology story), “Snail shell pattern in the velocity of stars - Gaia data” (image release), “Snail shell pattern in the velocity of stars” (image release), “The Sagittarius dwarf galaxy in Gaia’s all-sky view” (image release) (ESA Space in Images), “Perturbations in the Milky Way” (image release)

Plausible home stars for interstellar object ‘Oumuamua” (Gaia Scientific Community story), “Gaia finds candidates for interstellar ‘Oumuamua’s home” (ESA Science & Technology story), “Past trajectories of the Sun, ‘Oumuamua and one of its potential home stars” (image release)

Gaia spots stars flying between galaxies” (ESA Science & Technology story), “Sprinting stars in the Milky Way” (image release) (ESA Space in Images)

Galactic hosts: Gaia uncovers major event in the formation of the Milky Way” (ESA Science & Technology story),  Gaia-Enceladus stars across the sky” (image release), “Gaia-Enceladus stars across the sky (2)” (image release) (ESA Space in Images), “Stellar debris of Galactic merger in the Milky Way” (image release), “A major event in the formation of the Milky Way” (image release), “Merger in the early formation stages of our Galaxy” (video release)

Some extra stories targeting the Gaia Scientific Community:

Gaia Newsletter #2

 

Dear Gaia newsletter subscribers,

With our second newsletter we try to bring you up to speed on the Gaia Data Release 2 and the latest developments in the Gaia mission. Also we would like to draw your attention to a call for Gaia DR3 user scenarios.


Announcement of ESLAB #53: The Gaia Universe

A conference will be held at ESTEC from 8 to 12 April 2019. Registration will open soon. The conference website can be found here.


Gaia Data Release 2

On 25 April 2018 at 12:00 CEST the Gaia mission released it second catalogue of sources. The release was announced through a press conference at ILA in Berlin and at various DPAC institutes all over Europe.

Replay the Gaia DR2 press conference or have a look at the overview page for Gaia Data Release 2 with many more videos discussing Gaia Data Release 2. For detailed information, read through the Gaia DR2 In-depth stories.

Many images and stories were released through ESA Science & Technology:
Gaia creates richest map of our Galaxy and beyond,
Gaia's sky in colour,
Gaia's Hertzsprung-Russel diagram,
Cosmic scales covered by Gaia's second data release,
Large Magellanic Cloud,
Small Magellanic Cloud,
Gaia's view of more than 14000 asteroids,
Gaia's globular clusters and dwarf galaxies,
Gaia's globular clusters and dwarf galaxies - with orbits,
Gaia's new map of star density,
the Galactic sensus takes shape,
Rotation of the Large Magellanic Cloud.

Make sure to watch the 360 degrees Gaia first sky map in colour with your smartphone or tablet! To get the full resolution version of the Gaia Sky in Colour, go to this page and select the version with the highest resolution. If you have a Virtual Reality set at home, browse the various VR resources using Gaia data. This page also links to some more 360 degrees videos on Gaia data.

Try out the application “Gaia’s stellar familiy portrait” to explore the Gaia Hertzsprung-Russell diagram, based on Gaia Data Release 2.


Important resources for users of Gaia data

Most important resources to understand the processing and content of Gaia data release 2 are the data release documentation and data release papers. The A&A special edition on Gaia Data Release 2 is now out as well and can be found here.

Each data release comes with its own citation guidelines. Please remember to add the acknowledgement and cite the relevant papers. This will greatly help us to argue for continued funding of the data processing effort and possible mission extensions.

To quickly get up to speed using Gaia data and be warned about the limitations of the data, check out the Gaia DR2 Guide for Scientists. These are short videos on very specific topics like “Validation”, “Apsis results”, “radial velocities”, “on the use of parallaxes”, and many more based on skype interviews with the Gaia DPAC experts on the subject.

Get your updates on newly found issues in Gaia Data Release 2 here, or read through some Archive tips and FAQ on data access

Wondering how to upload a table and use this in combination with Gaia data? Check out the "White Dwarfs Exploration tutorial". Wondering how to deal with large queries and timeouts? Check out the “query timeouts tutorial”. Wondering where to find the light curves? Check out the explantion of the Datalink Service and the “Datalink and light curves tutorial” Check out those and various other tutorials available from the Help tab at the Gaia Archive.

Discovered an issue? Are you unable to find your way to the data? Is something still unclear? Contact the Gaia Helpdesk and we bring you into contact with our Gaia or DPAC expert on the subject.

 

Gaia Data Access - Call for Gaia DR3 User Scenarios

With the recent release of Gaia DR2, the community is now asked to review the current set of Data Access Scenarios, and submit new data access scenarios, which will be considered for future implementation to support the development of the Gaia Archive system in the release of Gaia DR3 and the following Gaia DR4 release. The data release page gives an indication of the range of Gaia data products currently planned for release in the upcoming data releases.

Your help in describing how you wish to access the Gaia Data through the ESA Gaia archive and/or other access points is very valuable in helping the Gaia project develop and deploy the best possible interfaces and tools to help you, the science community, access and work with the Gaia data.

This call is open until December 2018. Please see the GREAT wiki page for details as to how to add new scenarios. Information on how to sign up are given on the home page under "A note on registering for the wiki”.


Gaia DR2 Exploration Lab

In June a Gaia DR2 Exploration Lab was held at ESAC (Madrid) to stimulate state-of-the-art exploitation of the Gaia DR2 dataset. A week to bring together scientists with diverse educational and cultural backgrounds, with different interests and from different locations working together on exciting scientific topics in a collaborative spirit.


More stories on Gaia

Some more stories are available through Gaia Cosmos: Mapping and Visualising Gaia DR2, Asteroids in Gaia and Impressions from the IAU General Assembly with presentations and information on the virtual reality demonstrations given.
Other stories were published by ESA Science and Technology: Infant exoplanet weighed by Hipparcos and Gaia; by ESA Space in Videos: ESA Euronews: Gaia’s revolution in astronomy; by ESA Space in Images: Flying through asteroids in VR, Exoplanet mission timeline, Astrometric measurements to detect exoplanets, Gaia’s stellar family portrait.


More information on future releases

Currently Gaia DPAC is processing the data for Gaia Data Release 3. More information on future data releases and their contents is given here.

 

Gaia mission or Gaia DPAC vacancies

Looking for a job? Gaia mission and Gaia DPAC vacancies are announced through our vacancies page. Interested in an ESA Research Fellowship in Space Science? Deadline to submit applications for research fellowships is 1 October. More details can be found on ESA Faculty Page.

Gaia Newsletter #1

Dear all,

Welcome to the Gaia Newsletter. The Gaia newsletter will be used to announce updates on the Gaia mission and the Gaia data releases.

 

Upcoming Gaia Data Release 2

On wednesday 25 April Gaia will release a catalogue of 1,692,919,135 sources of which all will have position and brightness, and most will have parallax, proper motion and colour information. The release will also contain radial velocities for more than 7 million sources, effective temperatures for more than 160 million sources and other astrophysical parameters for more than 76 milion sources. Data Release 2 will contain as well epoch data (position and brightness) on more than 14,000 asteroids.

More detailed information on the exact contents of Gaia Data Release 2 can be found here.

The press event of the release will take place at ILA in Berlin, and a livestream of this event will be available. Many local events are organised at institutes involved in the Gaia Data Processing and Analysis.

A webpage pointing to Gaia DR2 resources, information and updates can be found here. The link to the livestream of the press event will be provided on this page once known on 25 April.

 

Maitenance to the Gaia Archive

To prepare for the second data release, the Gaia Archive will be taken down for an extended period. Downtime starts 11 April 12:00 and ends when Gaia DR2 is released on 25 April. During this time, downloading the Gaia DR1 data will remain available (through this link). Gaia DR1 data is also served from our partner data centres, information on these data centres can be found here.


Gaia DR2 Exploration Lab

From 25 to 29 June 2018 a scientific gathering is planned to explore the Gaia DR2 data. This event takes place at ESAC near Madrid (Spain). Are you interested in brainstorming uses of Gaia data in a collaborative way? Registration for this event is still open until 13 April. More information on this event can be found here.


Gaia DR2 Workshop

From 18 to 21 June 2018 a workshop on the contents and learning how to access Gaia DR2 is given in Heidelberg (Germany). Registration for this workshop is open now through this page.


ESLAB #53: The Gaia Universe

At ESA ESTEC in Noordwijk (The Netherlands) a conference will be planned to discuss science using Gaia data. This event will take place from 8 to 12 April 2019. More information will follow soon.


Latest Gaia stories

Gaia public outreach stories can be found here. More in-depth stories aimed at astronomers can be found on here.