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The Australia Telescope Large Area Survey: 2.3 GHz observations of ELAIS-S1 and CDF-S: Spectral index properties of the faint radio sky


Zinn, P-C and Middelberg, E and Norris, RP and Hales, CA and Mao, MY and Randall, KE, The Australia Telescope Large Area Survey: 2.3 GHz observations of ELAIS-S1 and CDF-S: Spectral index properties of the faint radio sky, Astronomy and Astrophysics: A European Journal, 544 Article A38. ISSN 0004-6361 (2012) [Refereed Article]


Copyright Statement

Copyright 2012 ESO

DOI: doi:10.1051/0004-6361/201219349


Context. The Australia Telescope Large Area Survey (ATLAS) aims to image a 7 deg2 region centred on the European Large Area ISO Survey – South 1 (ELAIS-S1) field and the Chandra Deep Field South (CDF-S) at 1.4 GHz with high sensitivity (up to σ ~ 10   μJy) to study the evolution of star-forming galaxies (SFGs) and Active Galactic Nuclei (AGN) over a wide range of cosmic time.

Aims. We present here ancillary radio observations at a frequency of 2.3 GHz obtained with the Australia Telescope Compact Array (ATCA). The main goal of this is to study the radio spectra of an unprecedented large sample of sources (~2000 observed,  ~600 detected in both frequencies).

Methods. With this paper, we provide 2.3 GHz source catalogues for both ATLAS fields, with a detection limit of 300 μJy (equivalent to 4.5σ in the ELAIS-S1 field and 4.0σ in the CDF-S). We compute spectral indices between 1.4 GHz and 2.3 GHz using matched-resolution images and investigate various properties of our source sample in dependence of their spectral indices.

Results. We find the entire source sample to have a median spectral index αmed =  −0.74, in good agreement with both the canonical value of  −0.7 for optically thin synchrotron radiation and other spectral index studies conducted by various groups. Regarding the radio spectral index as indicator for source type, we find only marginal correlations so that flat or inverted spectrum sources are usually powered by AGN and hence conclude that at least for the faint population the spectral index is not a strong discriminator. We investigate the zα relation for our source sample and find no such correlation between spectral index and redshift at all. We do find a significant correlation between redshift and radio to near-infrared flux ratio, making this a much stronger tracer of high-z radio sources. We also find no evidence for a dependence of the radio-IR correlation on spectral index.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:galaxies, radio continuum, Australia Telescope Large Area Survey, radio observation, spectral index
Research Division:Physical Sciences
Research Group:Astronomical sciences
Research Field:Galactic astronomy
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the physical sciences
UTAS Author:Mao, MY (Miss Minnie Mao)
ID Code:118237
Year Published:2012
Web of Science® Times Cited:14
Deposited By:Mathematics and Physics
Deposited On:2017-07-07
Last Modified:2017-08-21
Downloads:120 View Download Statistics

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