Volume 368, Number 3, March IV 2001
|Page(s)||787 - 796|
|Section||Cosmology (including clusters of galaxies)|
|Published online||15 March 2001|
The Calar Alto Deep Imaging Survey: K-band Galaxy number counts*
Present address: Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, 60 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138, USA
2 Max-Planck Institut für Astronomie, Königstuhl 17, 69117 Heidelberg, Germany
3 Present address: California Institute of Technology, MS 320-47, Pasadena, CA 91125, USA
4 Present address: STScI, 3700 San Martin Dr., Baltimore, MD 21218, USA
Corresponding author: J.-S. Huang, email@example.com
Accepted: 4 January 2001
We present K-band number counts for the faint galaxies in the Calar Alto Deep Imaging Survey (CADIS). We covered 4 CADIS fields, a total area of , in the broad band filters B, R and K. We detect about 4000 galaxies in the K-band images, with a completeness limit of , and derive the K-band galaxy number counts in the range of . This is the largest medium deep K-band survey to date in this magnitude range. The B- and R-band number counts are also derived, down to completeness limits of and . The K-selected galaxies in this magnitude range are of particular interest, since some medium deep near-infrared surveys have identified breaks of both the slope of the K-band number counts and the mean color at . There is, however, a significant disagreement in the K-band number counts among the existing surveys. Our large near-infrared selected galaxy sample allows us to establish the presence of a clear break in the slope at from dlog N/dm = 0.64 at brighter magnitudes to dlog N/dm = 0.36 at the fainter end. We construct no-evolution and passive evolution models, and find that the passive evolution model can simultaneously fit the B-, R- and K-band number counts well. The colors show a clear trend to bluer colors for . We also find that most of the - galaxies have a color bluer than the prediction of a no-evolution model for an Sbc galaxy, implying either significant evolution, even for massive galaxies, or the existence of an extra population of small galaxies.
Key words: cosmology: observations / galaxies: evolution / galaxy: formation / surveys / infrared: galaxies
© ESO, 2001
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