Barycentric Julian Date (BJD)
gâhdâd-e žulian-e gerânigâhi
Fr.: date julienne barycentrique
The → Julian Date referenced to the → barycenter of the → solar system. The BJD is more precise than the → Heliocentric Julian Day because the Sun is not stationary. It moves due to the → gravitational attraction of Jupiter and the other planets.
Heliocentric Julian Date
gâhdâd-e žulian-e hurmarkazi
Fr.: date julienne héliocentrique
The → Julian Date referenced to the center of the → Sun. Since the Earth revolves around the Sun, and since light travels at a finite speed, observations of a given object taken at different positions in the Earth's orbit are not equivalent, and so a correction for Earth's orbit around the Sun is required. Left uncorrected, the time of an observational event measured by Earth clocks will vary by 16.6 minute over the course of a year. If not properly accounted for, this can lead to a spurious signal in a → periodogram.
Julian date (JD)
Fr.: date julienne
A timekeeping system which does not have months and years. It is used primarily by astronomers to avoid confusion due to the use of different calendars at different times and places. Julian date is the interval of time in days and fractions of a day since noon 1 January 4713 B.C. (12h Universal Time). For example, January 1, 1970 is JD 2440588. Decimal fractions correspond to fractions of a day so that, for example, an observation made at 15h on June 24, 1962 is given as JD 2437840.13. → modified Julian date (MJD). Note that the "Julius" involved is not Julius Caesar, and this system is unrelated to the Julian calendar, as explained below.
The system was proposed by the French scholar Joseph Justus Scaliger (1540-1609) in 1583 and named after his father, Julius Caesar Scaliger. His choice of starting year was based on the convergence in 4713 B.C. of three calendrical cycles (indication cycle, Metonic cycle, and solar cycle). → date.
modified Julian date (MJD)
gâhdâd-e žulian-e vâtarzidé
Fr.: date julienne modifiée
A modification of the Julian Date, representing the number of days that have elapsed since midnight (instead of noon) at the beginning of Wednesday November 17, 1858. MJD = JD - 2,400,000.5 The reason for adopting that date is the fact that the Julian Day 2,400,000 just happens to be November 17, 1858.