The Astronomical Unit now

@article{Standish2004TheAU,
  title={The Astronomical Unit now},
  author={Erland Myles Standish},
  journal={Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union},
  year={2004},
  volume={2004},
  pages={163 - 179}
}
  • E. Standish
  • Published 1 June 2004
  • Physics
  • Proceedings of the International Astronomical Union
The Astronomical Unit is one of the most basic units of astronomy: the scale of the solar system. Yet its long and colorful history is sprinkled liberally with incorrect descriptions and mis-quoted definitions – today as much as ever. Over the last half century, the accuracy of the au determinations has improved dramatically: optical (triangulation) methods have given way to modern electronic observations, high-speed computers, and dedicated efforts to improve planetary ephemerides. Typical… 
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References

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submitted to Cel
  • Communication of IAA RAN
  • 2001
Well, quite, there's your problem. So it's important to get the concept clear, if youre talking to people who haven't followed the story right through from the
  • 1950
Don Kurtz: No, what's causing the astronomical unit to increase? What's the physical cause of the increase?
    Something I would like to see (if I could talk you into producing it) would be a nice map of one orbit of the Earth, with the Earth and the Sun in a inertial frame
      Myles Standish: I'm sorry, the question is?
        It took me three decades to figure this thing out!
          Myles Standish: I'm sorry, the question is? Marilyn Head: It was really just a comment. You know the minor planet occultations
            Oh! The occultations of asteroids? Marilyn Head: Yes
              No, I would say 7 ± 2. Now, I know that Dr Pitjeva has put out to another significant figure, so maybe that's significant
                Or, the occultation of a star by an asteroid
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