Wide-field imaging surveys provide a foundation for astronomical discovery and are an important exploratory step in our investigation of the Universe. NOAO's 4-m telescopes have long pioneered wide-field imaging. With a new generation of large CCD Mosaic cameras, the KPNO and CTIO 4-m telescopes now allow rapid mapping of large areas of sky to faint limiting magnitudes, an important enabling capability for follow-up deep spectroscopy with 8-m class telescopes such as Gemini.
The cover shows a 3.9'x3.9' postage stamp from the 2°x4.5° Cetus field of the NOAO Deep Wide-Field Survey. The Survey is an ongoing project led by Buell Jannuzi and Arjun Dey (NOAO) to map two 9-square-degree regions of sky, one in Boötes and one in Cetus, in BW, R, I, J, H, and K. Primary science goals are investigation of the evolution of galaxies and large-scale structure. The multicolor data will produce photometric redshift estimates and enable the selection of brown dwarfs, faint halo stars, distant quasars and galaxies, and other inhabitants of the astronomical zoo for spectroscopic study.
The color image shown was constructed by Nigel Sharp and Mark Hanna
R, and I images obtained using the NOAO 8Kx8K CCD MOSAIC Imager at the prime
focus of the 4-m Mayall telescope of the Kitt Peak National Observatory. The
seeing in the summed BW, R, and I frames is 1.2", 1.0", and 1.0",
The R frame reaches a 5 limiting AB magnitude
of 25.7 in a 2"-diameter aperture.
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Newsletter Posted: 10 Mar 2000