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Session 52 - Source Surveys and CMB Radiation.
Display session, Wednesday, June 10
Atlas Ballroom,

[52.02] Using NICMOS to Extend the Infrared Surface Brightness Fluctuation Distance Scale

J. B. Jensen (Gemini 8m Telescopes Project), J. L. Tonry (IfA, U. Hawaii), R. Thompson (Steward Obs.), T. Lauer, E. Ajhar (NOAO), M. Postman (STScI), M. Rieke (Steward Obs.), R. Weymann (Carnegie Obs.)

Infrared surface brightness fluctuations (IR SBFs) are much brighter than their optical counterparts and can be measured to greater distances. We calibrated the K-band SBF distance scale and demonstrated that ground-based observations can reach \sim7000 km\,s^-1. NICMOS on the Hubble Space Telescope, with its low background, makes it possible to extend the IR SBF distances scale further, possibly beyond 10,000 km\,s^-1. We have begun to measure SBF distances in the F160W (background minimizing) filter to a collection of galaxies distributed uniformly around the sky and reaching 10,000 km\,s^-1. Galaxies were chosen to minimize sensitivity to local bulk motions, and peculiar motions of the most distant galaxies in our sample should be small compared to their Hubble velocities. Our sample has enough overlap with other optical and IR SBF surveys to make a careful calibration of the F160W SBF distance scale possible. We present initial results for the first few galaxies observed with NICMOS and compare to other IR and optical SBF measurements.

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