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Calibration Targets


In addition to science targets, about 50 fibers out of each plate of 640 are assigned by target for calibration spectra. Since spectroscopy requires good sky subtraction, 32 of these calibration fibers are assigned to regions where the photometric pipeline detects no objects (in fact, the photometric pipeline outputs several such ``sky objects'' in each frame for this purpose). These sky fibers are distributed so that each bundle of 20 fibers contains one; this ensures that the sky fibers are reasonably uniformly distributed around the plate. In addition, 18 fibers per plate are assigned to standard stars of various sorts; eight are spectrophotometric standards, chosen to be F dwarfs, eight are reddening standards, chosen to be F subdwarfs, and two are hot subdwarfs (Table 26). The spectrophotometric standards are also used in correcting the strong telluric water absorption bands in the red end of the science target spectra (the smoothness of the F subdwarf spectra make them ideal for this purpose). Conversely, the hot subdwarfs are useful for calibrating the blue end of the science target spectra. Finally, as their name implies, the reddening standards will be used for determining the reddening of our Galaxy.

Further details of the spectroscopic calibration process are discussed in § 4.10.1.

Michael Strauss
Thu Jan 30 11:15:34 EST 2003