The first release of the AST3-1 Point Source Catalogue from Dome A, Antarctica
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© 2018 The Author(s) Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society. The three Antarctic Survey Telescopes (AST3) aim to carry out time-domain imaging survey at Dome A, Antarctica. The first of the three telescopes (AST3-1) was successfully deployed in 2012 January. AST3-1 is a 500mm aperture modified Schmidt telescope with a 680mm diameter primary mirror. AST3-1 is equipped with a SDSS i filter and a 10k × 10k frame transfer CCD camera, reduced to 5k × 10k by electronic shuttering, resulting in a 4.3 deg2 field of view. To verify the capability of AST3-1 for a variety of science goals, extensive commissioning was carried out between 2012 March and May. The commissioning included a survey covering 2000 deg2 as well as the entire Large and Small Magellanic Clouds. Frequent repeated images were made of the centre of the Large Magellanic Cloud, a selected exoplanet transit field, and fields including some Wolf-Rayet stars. Here, we present the data reduction and photometric measurements of the point sources observed by AST3-1.We have achieved a survey depth of 19.3mag in 60 s exposures with 5 mmag precision in the light curves of bright stars. The facility achieves sub-mmag photometric precision under stable survey conditions, approaching its photon noise limit. These results demonstrate that AST3-1 at Dome A is extraordinarily competitive in time-domain astronomy, including both quick searches for faint transients and the detection of tiny transit signals.
author list (cited authors)
Ma, B., Shang, Z., Hu, Y. i., Hu, K., Liu, Q., Ashley, M., ... Zhu, Z.