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Galactic Plane coverage

This page provides access to charts showing which fields of the UKST Southern Galactic Plane H-alpha/SR survey have been scanned by SuperCOSMOS and put on-line. Normally each scanned H-alpha field will have the matching SR counterpart also available.

The links below give access via a "clickable" map (if your browser supports this feature) which illustrates the on-line fields:

UKST H-alpha Galactic Plane survey -75 < Dec < +2.5 and |b| <~10deg

UKST SR Galactic Plane survey -75 < Dec < +2.5 and |b| <~10deg

Eventually it is hoped that the earlier (IIIaF/IV-N glass plate) `first epoch' SR/I survey of the Galactic Plane (1978-1985) will also be made available and tied in to the new H-alpha survey.

The key map of interest is that of the new H-alpha survey of the Southern Galactic Plane. The map has the same general form as for existing UKST surveys but the fields are on non-standard 4-degree centres (c.f. the normal 5-degree). This is because the circular aperture of the monolithic interference filter (on a standard RG630 356x356mm square glass substrate) has an effective diameter of only 5.5degrees. To ensure complete H-alpha coverage necessitated a move to 4-degree centres.

The southern sky is thus split-up into 1350 fields (c.f. the normal 894). The Galactic Plane region which covers only 233 of these fields is highlighted. Fields that have been scanned by SuperCOSMOS and put on-line are filled in as black squares. A filled in square indicates that the chosen field is available on-line.

In the H-alpha/SR Southern Galactic plane maps clicking on an individual field will return the housekeeping file from the superCOSMOS scan of the film together with a link to a heavily blocked down gif image of the H-alpha or SR SuperCOSMOS survey data. Note the H-alpha gif images have been contrast enhanced so it is easier to discern interesting areas of nebulosity.

There is then an option to download a view of the full scanned field as a fits file at a blocking ratio of 16:1. Importantly this fits file incorporates the World Co-ordinate System (WCS) in the header which allows identification, by position, of regions of interest in, for example, the blocked H-alpha image. These approximate positions can then be used to down-load full resolution H-alpha/SR image(s) from the main Get an IMAGE page.

Note: the on-line fields are also listed by B1950 field centre postion on a field by field basis for both the H-alpha and SR exposures here. Again the user can directly click to view a heavily blocked down gif image of the scanned field or else click to download the 16X blocked fits image of the field with WCS information built into the header. The H-alpha gif images have been contrast enhanced to show the emission nebulosity more clearly.

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WFAU, Institute for Astronomy,
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