Glossary term: distance ladder
Description: One of the key foundations of understanding the Universe is to determine distances to various objects and phenomena. Understanding distances allows scientists to not only map the observable Universe, but also understand the physical properties of various objects and phenomena. The distance ladder often called the Cosmic Distance Ladder, is a framework that provides an overview of the various techniques that are used to measure distances across a range of scales. Just like rungs of a ladder, each rung (measurement technique) of the distance ladder is calibrated based on the previous rung. The ladder starts with measurement techniques (e.g.: parallax, variable stars) that can be used for objects that are closer, and each proceeding rung allows scientists to measure more distant objects (e.g.: type Ia supernovae, redshift)Related Terms:
See this term in other languages
Term and definition status: This term and its definition is still awaiting approval
The OAE Multilingual Glossary is a project of the IAU Office of Astronomy for Education (OAE) in collaboration with the IAU Office of Astronomy Outreach (OAO). The terms and definitions were chosen, written and reviewed by a collective effort from the OAE, the OAE Centers and Nodes, the OAE National Astronomy Education Coordinators (NAECs) and other volunteers. You can find a full list of credits here. All glossary terms and their definitions are released under a Creative Commons CC BY-4.0 license and should be credited to "IAU OAE".