AAS 198th Meeting, June 2001
Session 54. Galaxy Evolution and Surveys
Display, Wednesday, June 6, 2001, 10:00am-7:00pm, Exhibit Hall

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[54.10] A Survey of Lyman Break Galaxies Associated with Damped Lyman Alpha Systems at z~3.

J. Cooke, A.M. Wolfe, E. Gawiser (Center for Astrophysics and Space Sciences, University of California, San Diego, La Jolla, CA), J. X. Prochaska (The Observatories of the Carnegie Institute of Washington, Pasadena, CA), J. Darling (Department of Astronomy, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY)

We present results from observations of the QSO field J2342+34 as part of a systematic survey for Lyman-break galaxies (LBGs) associated with Damped Lyman Alpha Absorption Systems at z ~3. Because Damped Lyman Alpha Absorbers (DLAs) are thought to be the progenitors of normal galaxies today, we must learn about the mass and environment of high redshift DLAs to understand the formation of typical galaxies like the Milky Way. The level of cross-correlation between LBGs and DLAs allow us to: determine the relationship between LBGs and DLAs, test models of structure formation, infer the mass of the DLAs, and lend insight into the nature of these protogalaxies at high redshift.

We can accurately determine the level of cross-correlation by determining the angular positions and redshifts of the LBGs in the DLA field. LBG candidates are detected via Lyman break photometric selection. Lyman break galaxies at z ~ 3 exhibit a large U-B color decrement that discriminate them against the greater number of low-z galaxies in the same field. Follow-up on the color selected candidates with multi-slit spectroscopy with LRIS at Keck allows us to confirm the LBGs and accurately determine their redshifts. We present, in part, current spectra from LBG candidates in this field and analysis to date.

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