Homogeneous Photometry for Star Clusters and Resolved Galaxies. II. Photometric Standard Stars

  • Stetson P
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Stars appearing in CCD images obtained over 224 nights during the course of 69 observing runs have been calibrated to the Johnson/Kron-Cousins BVRI photometric system defined by the equatorial standards of Landolt (1992, AJ, 104, 340). More than 15,000 stars suitable for use as photometric standards have been identified, where "suitable" means that the star has been observed five or more times during photometric conditions and has a standard error of the mean magnitude less than 0.02 mag in at least two of the four bandpasses, and shows no significant evidence of intrinsic variability. Many of these stars are in the same fields as Landolt's equatorial standards or Graham's (1982, PASP, 94, 244) southern E-region standards, but are considerably fainter. This enhances the value of those fields for the calibration of photometry obtained with large telescopes. Other standards have been defined in fields containing popular objects of astrophysical interest, such as star clusters and famous galaxies, extending Landolt-system calibrators to declinations far from the equator and to stars of sub-Solar chemical abundances. I intend to continue to improve and enlarge this set of photometric standard stars as more observing runs are reduced. The full current database of photometric indices is being made freely available via a site on the World-Wide Web, or by direct request to the author. Although the contents of the database will evolve in detail, at any given time it should represent the largest sample of precise BVRI broad-band photometric standards available anywhere.

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  • Peter B. Stetson

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