The UKIDSS Proposal


We propose to undertake a large area public IR survey programme using the planned UKIRT Wide Field Camera (WFCAM). There are several components to the programme.

  1. A high latitude survey covering 4000 sq. degs of the SDSS survey region to a depth K=18.4.
  2. An atlas of the Milky Way to a depth K=19.
  3. A survey of large area nearby open clusters and star formation regions to K=18.8, covering a range of ages and metallicities.
  4. A deep extragalactic survey, covering 35 sq. degs to a depth of K=21, including coverage of multi-wavelength key areas.
  5. An ultra-deep survey covering 0.77 sq. degs to a depth of K=23.

The scientific impact of such a programme ranges from the very nearest and faintest objects in the solar neighbourhood, through the structure of the Milky Way, to the most luminous and distant quasars at z=7. We aim to measure the sub-stellar mass function, to detect the era of re-ionisation, to measure cosmological parameters from the abundance of clusters at z>1, and to detect the era of spheroid formation if there was one. As well as achieving these intended goals, the public database resulting from the survey will be a fundamental international resource, and a goldmine of scientific projects for years to come.