The NRAO VLA Sky Survey (NVSS) is a 1.4 GHz continuum survey covering the entire sky north of -40 deg declination. A detailed description appears in the 1998 May issue of The Astronomical Journal (Condon, J. J., Cotton, W. D., Greisen, E. W., Yin, Q. F., Perley, R. A., Taylor, G. B., & Broderick, J. J. 1998, AJ, 115, 1693). The principal NVSS data products are:
The NVSS has been made as a service to the astronomical community, and the principal data products were released by anonymous FTP as soon as they were produced and verified. Users should read the postscript paper (about 4.7 megabytes) or the gzip compressed paper (about 1.2 megabytes) for an overview of the NVSS. If you use the NVSS, please reference it as: Condon, J. J., Cotton, W. D., Greisen, E. W., Yin, Q. F., Perley, R. A., Taylor, G. B., & Broderick, J. J. 1998, AJ, 115, 1693.
The sky positions of the large NVSS images are shown in the image grid plot. These images are in FITS format and can be read by the major astronomical software packages (AIPS, IRAF, etc.) as well as by a stand-alone FITS viewer for Windows 3.1, Windows 95, Macintosh, and Unix/X-windows systems. The full 4 deg X 4 deg FITS image cubes are available via anonymous FTP. You may also view (as either gray-scale images or contour plots) and/or copy selected subimages using our postage stamp server.
We extracted a source catalog from each image by fitting elliptical Gaussians to all significant peaks. The individual catalogs have been merged into the master catalog of sources from all images. See the catalog description for details about the cataloged source parameters. An NVSS catalog browser is available, but please exercise caution (don't ask for a catalog of the whole sky!). The user program NVSSlist can display selected portions of the catalog. Both the catalog browser and NVSSlist correct the raw catalog for known biases and computes errors associated with the source model parameters (position, flux density, etc.) using equations derived in Condon, J. J. 1997, PASP, 109, 166. To interpret the catalog results in complex or crowded fields, users should look at contour plots (available on the postage stamp server) showing the actual brightness distributions from which sources were extracted.
Image flux densities at specified positions in NVSS images may be obtained here. This service is offline currently.
Users of the AIPS task IMAGR often need to image extra fields covering nearby confusing sources. A RUN file generator produces the required list of field offsets for NVSS sources whose flux densities, attenuated by the primary beam, exceed a chosen cutoff.
To avoid ambiguity, please refer to NVSS sources using the standard IAU format NVSS EHHMMSS+DDMMSS, with E = J for equinox J2000 or E = B for equinox B1950 coordinates, HHMMSS the hours, minutes, and truncated (not rounded) seconds of right ascension, the declination sign (+ or -), and DDMMSS the degrees, minutes, and seconds (truncated, not rounded) of declination. Thus the NVSS source at J2000 RA = 00 00 00.24, DEC = -20 04 49.2 (= B1950 RA = 23 57 26.34, DEC = -20 21 31.5) should be called NVSS J000000-200449 or NVSS B235726-202131.
A mirror of the NVSS site is maintained by the University of Cambridge.
The NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database NED also provides NVSS subimages centered on all database objects north of -40 deg declination.
Several hundred thousand identifications of NVSS sources with optical objects in the APM or USNO-A catalogs are listed in the QORG catalog (Flesch & Hardcastle 2004, A&A, 427, 387).
Other large-scale radio surveys which may be of interest include:
For more information about the NVSS, contact
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Modified on Thursday, 19-Apr-2018 15:19:49 EDT