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University of Toledo
Subject Listing - Physics/Astronomy
Advisor: Dr. Adolf Witt
Saturday, Oral Session 7, Presentation 4, Robinson Hall 228
A VISIBLE WAVELENGTH SEARCH FOR LYMAN-BREAK GALAXIES AT Z~3
To better understand galaxy evolution in the early universe, we have constructed a large sample of high-redshift (z~3) candidate galaxies using the Lyman-break technique. My advisors and I traveled to Kitt Peak National Observatory in 2005 June to observe a large portion (~0.5 degrees on a side) of the Extended Groth Strip, a much-studied high galactic latitude field in the constellation Bootes. We used the 4-meter Mayall telescope configured with the wide-field optical MOSAIC camera together with g' and Johnson U filters to acquire a total of 35000 seconds (~9.7 hours) exposure time in U and 19000 seconds (~5.3 hours) exposure time in g' in a section of the Extended Groth Strip. The remainder of the work was completed at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics in Cambridge, Massachusetts. After I reduced the observations, we identified hundreds of objects using a very efficient method for photometric preselection known as the dropout technique, in which we categorized our sources using rest-UV colors observed at visible wavelengths. Specifically, we used U-g' and g'-R color criteria following to identify the candidate Lyman-break objects. In total, we identified 351 and 560 candidates (undetected and detected in U-band, respectively) at z~3. We hope to confirm these candidates with spectroscopic follow-up in the near future; to that end, a proposal has been submitted to the Gemini-North 8-meter telescope to acquire spectroscopic redshifts in the spring of 2006.
Advisor: Dr. Adolf Witt, Distinguished University Professor of Astronomy, Department of Phyiscs and Astronomy, University of Toledo, Toledo, OH