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Published February 2021 | Accepted Version + Published
Journal Article Open

A Spitzer survey of Deep Drilling Fields to be targeted by the Vera C. Rubin Observatory Legacy Survey of Space and Time


The Vera C. Rubin Observatory Legacy Survey of Space and Time (LSST) will observe several Deep Drilling Fields (DDFs) to a greater depth and with a more rapid cadence than the main survey. In this paper, we describe the 'DeepDrill' survey, which used the Spitzer Space Telescope Infrared Array Camera (IRAC) to observe three of the four currently defined DDFs in two bands, centred on 3.6 and 4.5 μm. These observations expand the area that was covered by an earlier set of observations in these three fields by the Spitzer Extragalactic Representative Volume Survey (SERVS). The combined DeepDrill and SERVS data cover the footprints of the LSST DDFs in the Extended Chandra Deep Field–South (ECDFS) field, the ELAIS-S1 field (ES1), and the XMM-Large-Scale Structure Survey field (XMM-LSS). The observations reach an approximate 5σ point-source depth of 2 μJy (corresponding to an AB magnitude of 23.1; sufficient to detect a 10¹¹M⊙ galaxy out to z ≈ 5) in each of the two bands over a total area of ≈29 deg². The dual-band catalogues contain a total of 2.35 million sources. In this paper, we describe the observations and data products from the survey, and an overview of the properties of galaxies in the survey. We compare the source counts to predictions from the SHARK semi-analytic model of galaxy formation. We also identify a population of sources with extremely red ([3.6]−[4.5] >1.2) colours which we show mostly consists of highly obscured active galactic nuclei.

Additional Information

© 2020 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of Royal Astronomical Society. This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/open_access/funder_policies/chorus/standard_publication_model). Accepted 2020 November 25. Received 2020 November 25; in original form 2020 August 7. Published: 30 November 2020. We would like to thank the referee for a thorough review that significantly improved the paper. We also thank the contributors to the original DeepDrill proposal not listed as coauthors on this paper, including M. Dickinson, I. Prandoni, and L. Spitler, and especially I. Smail for helpful comments and suggestions. This work is based on observations made with the Spitzer Space Telescope, which was operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology under a contract with NASA. Support for this work was provided by NASA through an award issued by JPL/Caltech. The National Radio Astronomy Observatory is a facility of the National Science Foundation operated under cooperative agreement by Associated Universities, Inc. WNB acknowledges support from NASA grant 80NSSC19K0961. GW acknowledges support from the National Science Foundation through grant AST-1517863, by HST program number GO-15294, and by grant number 80NSSC17K0019 issued through the NASA Astrophysics Data Analysis Program (ADAP). Support for program number GO-15294 was provided by NASA through a grant from the Space Telescope Science Institute, which is operated by the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy, Incorporated, under NASA contract NAS5-26555. IRS acknowledges support from the United Kingdom Science and Technology Facilities Council (ST/P000541/1).JA acknowledges financial support from the Science and Technology Foundation (FCT, Portugal) through research grants PTDC/FIS-AST/29245/2017, UIDB/04434/2020 and UIDP/04434/2020. Basic research in radio astronomy at the Naval Research Laboratory is funded through 6.1 Base funding. This research has made use of the NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database (NED), which is operated by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. This work made extensive use of TOPCAT (Taylor 2011) for catalogue matching and analysis. Data Availability: The data products from the post-cryogenic Spitzer surveys of the three LSST DDFs described here (images, coverage maps, uncertainty images, bright star masks, and single and dual-band catalogues) are available from IRSA (https://irsa.ipac.caltech.edu/data/SPITZER/DeepDrill). These include mosaic images, coverage maps, uncertainty images, and bright star masks. Each field has two single-band catalogues cut at 5σ, and a dual-band catalogue requiring a detection at >3σ at both 3.6 and 4.5 μm. The simulated light-cone catalogue from SHARK is also included in the release; its columns are described in Table 11.

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Accepted Version - 2011.15030.pdf


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August 20, 2023
October 23, 2023