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PLATO Benchmark stars

Aim of the working group

The aim of this working group is to coordinate and support efforts to measure precise and accurate fundamental properties for stars that can be used to validate and improve data products from the PLATO mission. These benchmarks will be used to calibrate stellar models, to test data analysis techniques, and to demonstrate that the mission can deliver the required accuracy for stellar parameters from asteroseismology (1-2% in radius, 15% in mass and 10% for the age of a G0 star of 1-M, 1-R star with and Teff=6000K).


Members of working group are expected to share information and provide expertise to other members of working group. The following activities are provided as typical examples of the type of information and expertise that might be provided.

  • Contributing text and figures to observing time proposals to study benchmark stars.
  • Helping other working group members to apply for funding to support their work on benchmark stars, e.g., informing them of funding opportunities, commenting on draft proposals, writing letters of support.
  • Sharing target lists or observing logs with other members of working group for the purposes of avoiding duplication of effort. Such information should not be distributed beyond members of the working group without the express permission of the provider.
  • Providing preliminary results, unpublished data, etc. to aid other members of working group in target selection or to optimise their observing strategy.
  • Running simulations, generating models and making calculations that will be used to select or prioritise stars for inclusion in a final sample of benchmark stars.
  • Organising activities that will be used to demonstrate the claimed precision and accuracy of the stellar parameters provided by the working group, e.g., "hare-and-hounds" exercises or conducting multiple independent studies of selected target stars.

See the “Current WP activities” web page for a list of current activities within this remit.

14 Feb 2019

Pierre Maxted presented an update on activities within WP125500 to other WP leaders at the WP11/WP12 Interface Meeting: Paris, France (12-13th February).

The WP has two new members - Dr Matt Burleigh from Leicester University and Dr Simon Hodgkin from IoA, Cambridge.

20 Nov 2019

The 3rd PLATO Stellar Science Workshop (19-22 Nov 2019, Barcelona) included a session on “Benchmark stars, calibration stars”. Slides of the talks from this session are available on the workshop web page.

Membership and contributing to WP125500

We welcome contributions from anyone actively working on measuring accurate properties of stars. Our “Current WP activities” web page shows activities for which we are particularly looking for contributions. Please contact Pierre Maxted ( and/or Orlagh Creevey ( to discuss membership of WP125500 if you are interested in joining this work package as a PLATO Science Team member.