LARGE SCALE IMAGING SURVEYS WITH THE INT WIDE FIELD CAMERA
ANNOUNCEMENT OF OPPORTUNITY
During the spring of 1997 the Wide Field Camera was commissioned
in the prime focus of the 2.5-meter Isaac Newton Telescope on
La Palma. This new instrument offers unique opportunities for the
UK/NL communities to execute high resolution, deep, wide field
optical imaging surveys.
At its meeting in October 1997 the Joint Steering Committee
considered ways to stimulate the use of the INT Wide Field Camera
for survey programmes. The committee reflected on the changing
role of the INT in the era of the 8-meter class telescopes.
It considered the INT ideally suited for programmes of target
selection for later follow-up study with large telescopes, and
for larger scale survey programmes with a clear scientific goal
in their own right.
In view of the shift in emphasis of the role of the INT, and given
that Gemini-North/South and ESO VLT will come on-line in the near
future, the Joint Steering Committee wishes to promote the use of
the INT Wide Field Camera for large scale survey work. It will make
available substantial amounts of observing time (three or more weeks
per semester) for high quality survey programmes, and therefore
releases this Announcement of Opportunity to apply for observing time
with the INT Wide Field Camera. This observing time will be allocated
independently from the existing time allocation committees such as
PATT, the NL TAG, and the CCI International Time Projects.
This Announcement of Opportunity makes available substantial amounts
of observing time with the prime focus Wide Field Camera on the Isaac
Newton Telescope. The announcement is intended for a small number of
large scale survey programmes which would normally be beyond the scope
of the bi-annual time allocation system. Observing time may be spread
over more than one semester, starting during semester 98B, and spanning
a period up to three years.
Review of progress is foreseen after the first year. No specific limit
is set to the amount of observing time that may be requested, but it
is expected that of order three to four weeks per semester will be
Applicants may wish to set up collaborations between research groups
in order to generate the widest possible interest in the proposed
survey, or combine various science objectives within the survey
programme definition. Equally welcome are proposals that have a well
focussed single scientific objective.
Final selection will be based on scientific merit, timeliness, and
technical feasibility of the proposed observations. Proposals must
fall outside the remit of the bi-annual time allocation process.
The planning and scheduling of the observations will be carried out
in conjunction with ING project staff, in order to best maximise
the efficiency of the survey.
The data will immediately be made available to the UK and Dutch
research community in semi-processed form, and later fully processed
(i.e. astrometrically and photometrically calibrated), through the
ING archive. Hence the usual one year proprietary period will not
apply to data obtained through this Announcement of Opportunity.
An international team of experts will advise the Joint Steering
Committee on the scientific merit and relative priorities of the
submitted proposals. The Joint Steering Committee is not bound by this
announcement to allocate any time in case it receives no suitable
proposals. Likewise it may merge proposals where a strong scientific
benefit will result.
A decision by the Committee is anticipated following its meeting
in May 1998.
This announcement is open to PIs currently working in the United Kingdom
and the Netherlands only.
Further details on how to submit proposals, and technical details
are presented below.
The following details have to be supplied in the application, which
should be laid out on 5 pages as described below:
Title of proposal
Name of PI and affiliation
Names of CoIs with affiliation
Postal and email address of PI
Summary of proposal (max 200 words)
List of targets with filter passbands & exposure times
Detailed science case
Figures & references
Technical description which must include
(ii) specification of target magnitude limits, and justification of
required number of (dark, grey, bright) nights.
Plan for data analysis and description of how the data will subsequently
be used. This should include a list of individuals on the project and
Proposals should be sent by electronic mail to Dr. N.A. Walton:
email@example.com, in ASCII text, LaTeX, or PostScript format.
Accompanying figures should be supplied in PostScript format.
Deadline for submission is 15 March 1998.
A confirmation of receipt shall be provided to the PI.
The INT Wide Field Camera holds four thinned 4096x2048 pixel
EEV CCDs with a pixel size 13.5 micron which projects to 0.33
arcsec on the sky.
The chip layout in the focal 111112222233333
plane covers an L-shaped part 111112222233333
of the sky, where the outer 111112222233333
perimeter has a length of 111112222233333
34 arcmin. The diagram to 111112222233333
the right indicates how the 111112222233333
four chips are oriented. 4444444444
The total area covered is 4444444444
0.27 square degree. 4444444444
[NB: the availability of CCD #3 is not presently known, in which
case the imaging area will be 0.21 square degree with only
CCDs 1, 2, and 4]
The chips are thinned and have excellent QE performance.
[For details on QE see Spectrum No. 15 Sep 1997 page 20]
Limiting magnitude estimates for a 10-15 min exposure are given
in the following table, assuming a dark sky and a median seeing
of 0.7 arcsec. [For 1 arcsec seeing subtract 0.4 mag, or for
1.5 arcsec seeing subtract 0.8 mag.]
U ---- 6300 400
B ---- 8300 1200
V ---- 6900 1900
R 4300 3300 1700
I 2700 2300 1400
Z 700 600 500
The readout time of the mosaic (after soon to be implemented
controller upgrades) will be some 120 seconds. During this time
the telescope can be slewed and autoguiding started, hence the
readout time determines the deadtime.
A UBVRIZ broad band glass filter set is available for the WFC plus a
KPNO-type B-band filter. Available narrow band filters are OIII and
H-alpha, plus Stromgen u,b,v,y. Full details on filter lambda, FWHM,
peak transmission can be found on the ING WWW site at
further details may be obtained from the WFC instrument specialist,
Dr. N.A. Walton ( firstname.lastname@example.org).
This page last updated: 20 January 1998
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