The century survey galactic halo project. I. Stellar spectral analysis

Warren R. Brown, Carlos Allende Prieto, Timothy C. Beers, Ronald Wilhelm, Margaret J. Geller, Scott J. Kenyon, Michael J. Kurtz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Scopus citations


The Century Survey Galactic Halo Project is a photometric and spectroscopic survey from which we select relatively blue stars (V - R < 0. 30 mag) as probes of the Milky Way halo. The survey strip spans the range of Galactic latitude 35° < b < 88°, allowing us to study the nature of populations of stars and their systematic motions as a function of Galactic latitude. One of our primary goals is to use blue horizontal-branch stars to trace potential star streams in the halo, and to test the hierarchical model for the formation of the Galaxy. In this paper we discuss spectroscopy and multipassband photometry for a sample of 764 blue stars in the Century Survey region. Our sample consists predominantly of A- and F-type stars. We describe our techniques for determination of radial velocities, effective temperatures, metallicities, and surface gravities. Based on these measurements, we derive distance estimates by comparison with a set of calibrated isochrones. We devote special attention to the classification of blue horizontal-branch stars, and compare the results obtained from the application of the techniques of Kinman et al., Wilhelm et al., and Clewley et al. We identify 55 blue horizontal-branch stars. Our large sample of stars also uncovers a number of unusual objects, including three carbon-enhanced stars, a late B-type star located 0.8 kpc above the Galactic plane, and a DZ white dwarf.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1362-1380
Number of pages19
JournalAstronomical Journal
Issue number3 1773
StatePublished - Sep 2003


  • Galaxy: halo
  • Galaxy: stellar content
  • Stars: abundances
  • Stars: horizontal-branch

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science


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