Commission H1 The Local Universe

Scientific Objectives

Commission H1 focuses on studies of the Milky Way and nearby galaxies, where we can resolve galaxies into stars. A range of observational and theoretical research on the stellar populations, interstellar medium, dark matter of local galaxies, etc. are covered in order to understand galaxy formation, composition and evolution. Recent and future ground- and space-based photometric, spectroscopic, and astrometric surveys contribute to the knowledge revolution that this field is experiencing. Current and forthcoming facilities will yield an even deeper understanding of our local Universe.

The science covered by this commission is promoted by the recent and ongoing missions and projects including those listed below:

* Astrometry

  • Continuing research on the Gaia DR2 released on April 2018 yielding a number of publications.

* Photometry for variable stars, seismology, and planet search

  • The Kepler satellite extended mission (K2)
  • Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment (OGLE)
  • Palomar Transient Factory (PTF) and Zwicky Transient Facility (ZTF) in the North
  • Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS)

*Imaging and Photometry

  • Dark Energy Survey (DES) optical imaging
  • Galactic Legacy Infrared Mid-Plane Survey Extraordinaire (GLIMPSE) in the near and mid-IR
  • Catalina Northern-sky Survey in the optical
  • Panchromatic Hubble Andromeda Treasury (PHAT)
  • The VISTA near-infrared YJKs survey of the Magellanic System (VMC)
  • VISTA Hemisphere survey (VHS) in the South
  • VISTA Variables in the Via Lactea (VVV) and extended (VVVX) near-IR surveys
  • Wide-field Infrared Survey Explorer (ALLWISE)
  • Panoramic Survey Telescope and Rapid Response System (Pan-STARRS) all-sky optical imaging
  • Galactic Legacy Infrared Mid-Plane Survey Extraordinaire (GLIMPSE) in the near and mid-IR


  • The 15th release of the SDSSIV data (DR15) including the APO Galactic Evolution Experiment (APOGEE2) near-IR survey, and the Mapping Nearby Galaxies at Apache Point Observatory survey (MANGA).
  • The Large Sky Area Multi-Object Fibre Spectroscopic Telescope (LAMOST) data release
  • Release of more RAdial Velocity Experiment (RAVE) data
  • Release of more Gaia-ESO Survey (GES) data
  • The Galactic Archaeology with HERMES survey (GALAH)
  • Southern Photometric Local Universe Survey (S-PLUS)

*Future projects

  • The Vera Rubin Observatory, formerly known as the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) planning continued with different white papers available online at the arXiv.
  • 4MOST and MOONS planning continued with papers published in The Messenger.

* Science and Outreach

  • The Galaxy Zoo experiment involving the wider community

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