Abstract:Maser astrometry is now providing parallaxes with accuracies of ±10 micro-arcseconds, which corresponds to 10% accuracy at a distance of 10 kpc! The VLBA BeSSeL Survey and the Japanese VERA project have measured ≈200 parallaxes for masers associated with young, high-mass stars. Since these stars are found in spiral arms, we now are directly mapping the spiral structure of the Milky Way. Combining parallaxes, proper motions, and Doppler velocities, we have complete 6-dimensional phase-space information. Modelin… Show more
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