- Home
- Scientific program
- Proceedings
- List of participants
- Photos
- Venue/Lodging
- Links
- Contact

Christopher Jacobs
Type of contribution: oral

ICRF-3: Status, Plans, and Multi-wavelength Progress towards the next generation ICRF

Christopher Jacobs, JPL ICRF-3 working group

The ICRF-3: Status, Plans, and Progress on the next generation Celestial Reference Frame. C.S. Jacobs, JPL and the ICRF-3 working group ICRF-3 seeks to improve the highly successful ICRF-2. Our goals are to improve the precision, spatial and frequency coverage relative to the ICRF-2 by 2018. This date is driven by the desire to create radio frames that are ready for comparison with the Gaia optical frame. Several specific actions are underway. S/X-band re-observation of 2200 VLBA Calibrator Survey sources is reducing the factor of 5 deficit in precision compared to the rest of the ICRF-2. S/X-band southern precision improvements are underway with observations using southern antennas such as the AuScope and HartRAO. We also seek to improve radio frequency coverage with X/Ka and K-band work. An X/Ka frame of 660 sources now has full sky coverage and improved southern accuracy both aided by an Argentinian station. A K-band team has data over the south polar cap to complete full sky coverage and VLBA observations are approved to increase the number of sources to over 500. On the analysis front, combination techniques are being researched both of VLBI frames and of multiple data types. Consistency of the CRF with the TRF and EOP is another area of concern. Comparison of various celestial frame solutions is underway in order to identify and correct systematic errors. Most notable is a 100 ľas zonal shift between ICRF2 and ICRF3 candidates in the south from declination 0 to -30 degrees. Finally, work is underway to identify and pinpoint sources bright enough in both radio and optical to allow for a robust frame tie between VLBI and Gaia optical frames.