Session 9 - The Hubble Deep Field.
Display session, Monday, January 15
North Banquet Hall, Convention Center
Very deep images have been obtained with Hubble Space Telescope of a field at high galactic latitude with no galactic extinction and in the HST northern continuous viewing zone (dec = + 62.5 deg). WFPC2 images in four wavelength bands centered at 300, 450, 606, and 814 nm were acquired over an interval of 150 consecutive orbits with the aim of detecting faint objects down to V \sim 30 mag and features of very low surface brightness. Although low luminosity stars and other interesting objects may appear in the images, the primary purpose of the long exposures is to provide information on the characteristics of distant galaxies. The Hubble Deep Field, located in Ursa Major, was selected to have characteristics that make it optimal for follow-up study at other wavelengths. It has a very low H I column density, low IR emission, is not near bright optical or radio sources, and does not contain any known nearby galaxies. Most of the galaxies imaged are likely to be too faint for spectroscopy to be obtained with even the largest ground-based telescopes, and therefore a broad wavelength baseline was chosen for the images in order to maximize the discrimination of any properties, such as stellar content and redshift, that might eventually be deduced from color information. The observations have been carried out as a community service, with the idea that they will provide a standard reference for models of galaxy evolution and cosmology, and will spark complementary observations from other facilities. The data will be made publicly available during the AAS meeting.