Candels: The Cosmic Assembly Near-infrared Deep Extragalactic Legacy Survey

Norman A. Grogin, Dale D. Kocevski, S. M. Faber, Henry C. Ferguson, Anton M. Koekemoer, Adam G. Riess, Viviana Acquaviva, David M. Alexander, Omar Almaini, Matthew L.N. Ashby, Marco Barden, Eric F. Bell, Frédéric Bournaud, Thomas M. Brown, Karina I. Caputi, Stefano Casertano, Paolo Cassata, Marco Castellano, Peter Challis, Ranga Ram CharyEdmond Cheung, Michele Cirasuolo, Christopher J. Conselice, Asantha Roshan Cooray, Darren J. Croton, Emanuele Daddi, Tomas Dahlen, Romeel Davé, Duília F. De Mello, Avishai Dekel, Mark Dickinson, Timothy Dolch, Jennifer L. Donley, James S. Dunlop, Aaron A. Dutton, David Elbaz, Giovanni G. Fazio, Alexei V. Filippenko, Steven L. Finkelstein, Adriano Fontana, Jonathan P. Gardner, Peter M. Garnavich, Eric Gawiser, Mauro Giavalisco, Andrea Grazian, Yicheng Guo, Nimish P. Hathi, Boris Häussler, Philip F. Hopkins, Jia Sheng Huang, Kuang Han Huang, Saurabh W. Jha, Jeyhan S. Kartaltepe, Robert P. Kirshner, David C. Koo, Kamson Lai, Kyoung Soo Lee, Weidong Li, Jennifer M. Lotz, Ray A. Lucas, Piero Madau, Patrick J. McCarthy, Elizabeth J. McGrath, Daniel H. McIntosh, Ross J. McLure, Bahram Mobasher, Leonidas A. Moustakas, Mark Mozena, Kirpal Nandra, Jeffrey A. Newman, Sami Matias Niemi, Kai G. Noeske, Casey J. Papovich, Laura Pentericci, Alexandra Pope, Joel R. Primack, Abhijith Rajan, Swara Ravindranath, Naveen A. Reddy, Alvio Renzini, Hans Walter Rix, Aday R. Robaina, Steven A. Rodney, David J. Rosario, Piero Rosati, Sara Salimbeni, Claudia Scarlata, Brian Siana, Luc Simard, Joseph Smidt, Rachel S. Somerville, Hyron Spinrad, Amber N. Straughn, Louis Gregory Strolger, Olivia Telford, Harry I. Teplitz, Jonathan R. Trump, Arjen Van Der Wel, Carolin Villforth, Risa H. Wechsler, Benjamin J. Weiner, Tommy Wiklind, Vivienne Wild, Grant Wilson, Stijn Wuyts, Hao Jing Yan, Min S. Yun

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1627 Scopus citations


The Cosmic Assembly Near-infrared Deep Extragalactic Legacy Survey (CANDELS) is designed to document the first third of galactic evolution, over the approximate redshift (z) range 8-1.5. It will image >250,000 distant galaxies using three separate cameras on the Hubble Space Telescope, from the mid-ultraviolet to the near-infrared, and will find and measure Type Ia supernovae at z > 1.5 to test their accuracy as standardizable candles for cosmology. Five premier multi-wavelength sky regions are selected, each with extensive ancillary data. The use of five widely separated fields mitigates cosmic variance and yields statistically robust and complete samples of galaxies down to a stellar mass of 109 M to z 2, reaching the knee of the ultraviolet luminosity function of galaxies to z 8. The survey covers approximately 800 arcmin2 and is divided into two parts. The CANDELS/Deep survey (5σ point-source limit H = 27.7mag) covers 125 arcmin2 within Great Observatories Origins Deep Survey (GOODS)-N and GOODS-S. The CANDELS/Wide survey includes GOODS and three additional fields (Extended Groth Strip, COSMOS, and Ultra-deep Survey) and covers the full area to a 5σ point-source limit of H ≳ 27.0mag. Together with the Hubble Ultra Deep Fields, the strategy creates a three-tiered "wedding-cake" approach that has proven efficient for extragalactic surveys. Data from the survey are nonproprietary and are useful for a wide variety of science investigations. In this paper, we describe the basic motivations for the survey, the CANDELS team science goals and the resulting observational requirements, the field selection and geometry, and the observing design. The Hubble data processing and products are described in a companion paper.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number35
JournalAstrophysical Journal, Supplement Series
Issue number2
StatePublished - Dec 2011


  • cosmology: observations
  • galaxies: high-redshift


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