Statistical Analysis of Astrometric Errors for the Most Productive Asteroid Surveys [EPA]

We performed a statistical analysis of the astrometric errors for the major asteroid surveys. We analyzed the astrometric residuals as a function of observation epoch, observed brightness and rate of motion, finding that astrometric errors are larger for faint observations and some stations improved their astrometric quality over time. Based on this statistical analysis we develop a new weighting scheme to be used when performing asteroid orbit determination. The proposed weights result in ephemeris predictions that can be conservative by a factor as large as 1.5. However, the new scheme is more robust with respect to outliers and better handles faint detections.

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P. Veres, D. Farnocchia, S. Chesley, et. al.
Mon, 13 Mar 17

Comments: 25 pages, 11 figures, 5 tables