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2.3.6. Conclusions on the LMC Distance

The distance to LMC is uncertain as much as 0.4 mag (20% in distance), ranging from 18.20 to 18.60. The results are rather bimodal around the two values close to the edges. A geometric method with SN1987A ring echo initiated by Panagia et al. 1991 does not differentiate between these two values: the data are too noisy and the result depends on the model of the light curve and emission lines that is adopted (Gould & Uza 1997; Sonneborn et al. 1997; see Fig. 8 of the latter literature for the data quality). As we have seen in this section, recent observations with new techniques seem to tip the list to the lower value. This is clearly a systematic effect, so that we cannot simply take an `average of all observations'. Rather, we should leave both possibilities open.