NOAO >   Observing Info >   Approved Programs >   1999B-0020

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Proposal Information for 1999B-0020


PI: Jeff Willick, Stanford University, jeffw@perseus.stanford.edu
Address: Stanford, CA 94305-4060

CoI: Mike Hudson, U Victoria
CoI: John Lucey, Durham
CoI: David Schade, CADC/HIA
CoI: Russell Smith, U Catolica de Chile
CoI: Nick Suntzeff, CTIO
CoI: Gary Wegner, Dartmouth
CoI: Roger Davies, Durham

Title: A Fundamental Plane Peculiar Velocity Survey of Rich Clusters within 200 h^-1 Mpc

Abstract: The peculiar velocity field is the only probe of the mass distribution on large scales (\gtrsim 10 \hmpc) in the nearby Universe. In particular, the bulk flow of the local volume with respect to the CMB probes the very largest scales. Some recent bulk flow results are apparently in conflict, possibly due to the systematics arising from the wide range of instrumentation used by the different groups. We propose a deep, homogeneous, all-sky spectroscopic and photometric study of 100 X-ray selected clusters within 200 \hmpc. Using the Fundamental Plane distance indicator, we will make an independent determination of the large-scale flow of clusters of galaxies with respect to the CMB. With 4000 early-type galaxies (a factor of 5 increase over current FP surveys), we expect combined random and systematic errors to be \lesssim 120 km/s for each component of the bulk flow vector. This goal can only be accomplished by a survey program which guarantees access to identical instrumentation over the course of the survey. The resulting photometric and spectroscopic database will be a unique and valuable resource to the community for studies of galaxy morphology, stellar populations and galaxy evolution in the cluster environment.


National Optical Astronomy Observatory, 950 North Cherry Avenue, P.O. Box 26732, Tucson, Arizona 85726, Phone: (520) 318-8000, Fax: (520) 318-8360



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