Astrometry with the wide-field infrared space telescope

Robyn E. Sanderson, Andrea Bellini, Stefano Casertano, Jessica R. Lu, Peter Melchior, Mattia Libralato, David Bennett, Michael Shao, Jason Rhodes, Sangmo Tony Sohn, Sangeeta Malhotra, Scott Gaudi, S. Michael Fall, Ed Nelan, Puragra Guhathakurta, Jay Anderson, Shirley Ho

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Scopus citations


The Wide-Field Infrared Space Telescope (WFIRST) will be capable of delivering precise astrometry for faint sources over the enormous field of view of its main camera, the Wide-Field Imager (WFI). This unprecedented combination will be transformative for the many scientific questions that require precise positions, distances, and velocities of stars. We describe the expectations for the astrometric precision of the WFIRST WFI in different scenarios, illustrate how a broad range of science cases will see significant advances with such data, and identify aspects of WFIRST's design where small adjustments could greatly improve its power as an astrometric instrument.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number044005
JournalJournal of Astronomical Telescopes, Instruments, and Systems
Issue number4
StatePublished - Oct 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Instrumentation
  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Space and Planetary Science


  • Astronomy
  • Infrared detectors
  • Infrared imaging
  • Infrared space observatory


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