The edge of the milky way stellar disk revealed using clump giant stars as distance indicators

D. Minniti, R. K. Saito, J. Alonso-García, P. W. Lucas, M. Hempel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

We use the clump giants of the disk as standard candles calibrated from Hipparcos parallaxes in order to map their distribution with two new near-infrared surveys of the Galactic plane: UKIDSS-GPS and VISTA Variables in the Vía Lctea (VVV). We explore different selection cuts of clump giants. We conclude that there is an edge of the stellar disk of the Milky Way at R = 13.9 0.5kpc along various lines of sight across the Galaxy. The effect of the warp is considered, taking fields at different longitudes and above and below the plane. We demonstrate that the edge of the stellar disk of the Milky Way can now be mapped in the near-infrared in order to test different models, and to establish our own place within the Galaxy.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberL43
JournalAstrophysical Journal Letters
Volume733
Issue number2 PART 2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2011

Keywords

  • Galaxy: disk
  • Galaxy: structure
  • stars: distances
  • stars: late-type

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Astronomy and Astrophysics
  • Space and Planetary Science

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