The Burrell Schmidt Deep Virgo Survey

Over the course of 7 observing seasons spanning the years 2004-2011, we used CWRU Astronomy's Burrell Schmidt telescope at Kitt Peak National Observatory to conduct a deep, wide-field imaging survey of the nearby Virgo Cluster of galaxies. The survey footprint covers 16.7 square degrees in the Washington M filter and 15.3 square degrees in a modified Johnson B filter ("Bdsp"), with 11.1 square degrees covered in both filters. The data is transformed into standard Johnson B and V magnitudes, and we achieve a limiting 3-sigma surface brightness of mu(B)=29.5 and mu(V)=28.5 mags/arcsec2.

Team Members:

PI: Chris Mihos, Department of Astronomy, Case Western Reserve University

  • Paul Harding, CWRU
  • John Feldmeier, Youngstown State
  • Craig Rudick, University of Kentucky
  • Steven Janowiecki, ICRAR, University of Western Australia
  • Heather Morrison, CWRU
  • Colin Slater, University of Washington
  • Aaron Watkins, CWRU

Data Download

The calibrated, masked/median-binned (9x9) surface brightness maps are available here:
Full resolution survey mosaics are available here.

The photometric solution for the images (already applied to the masked/median-binned images) is given by:

mB = -2.5log(IB) - 0.125(B-V) + 28.973
mV = -2.5log(IM) - 0.246(B-V) + 28.606

Note (1/2/20): Prior to this note, the photometric solution given on this page and written into the image header contained a sign error in the color term. This does not affect the data (or any published results), since the proper calibration was always being applied. It was simply a typo on this page and in what was written to the image headers. If you downloaded the data prior to this date, you should re-download the images so that you have versions with the correct solution written in the header.

If you use the imaging data in your research, please cite the main survey paper (Mihos et al 2017), and please also let us know how you're using the data. Thanks.

(From Mihos et al 2017)

Survey Publications

Publications led by team members:

Other publications using BSDVS data:


Financial support for the survey has been provided by The National Science Foundation, Research Corporation, and the Department of Astronomy and College of Arts and Sciences at Case Western Reserve University.