AAS 198th Meeting, June 2001
Session 79. Galaxy Surveys
Oral, Thursday, June 7, 2001, 10:00-11:30am, C106

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[79.01] The Space Density of Early Type Galaxies at 1 < z < 1.5 from the Las Campanas IR Survey

P. McCarthy, H. -W. Chen, P. Martini, S. E. Persson, A. Oemler (OCIW), R. Carlberg, R. Abraham (Toronto), A. Firth, R. McMahon, O. Lahav, C. Sabbey (IoA), R. Marzke (S.F.State), R. Ellis (Caltech), R. Somerville (Michigan), J. Wilson (OCIW)

We report the results of an optical and near-IR survey over 0.7 square degrees at high latitudes. The number-magnitude relation for galaxies with I - H > 3 is very steep, rising from a few per square degree at H = 17 to more than 1000 per square degree at H = 20.5. The surface density of red objects drops by roughly a factor of 10 for each magnitude of redder colors between 3 < I - H < 5. We use photometric redshifts to estimate the characteristic redshift for this sample, and its redshift extent, to be = 1, \sigma(z) = 0.25. From this we deduce a space density of luminous red galaxies of 3 \times 10-3h-3 Mpc-3. This is somewhat less than that expected from passive evolution but roughly equal to the present day value. If these are massive early-type galaxies their space density exceeds the expectations based on hierarchical clustering models.

This research was supported by the National Science Foundation under grant AST-9900806. The CIRSI camera was made possible by the generous support of the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Foundation.

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