The Cosmic Evolution Survey (COSMOS) is an astronomical survey designed to probe the formation and evolution of galaxies as a function of both cosmic time (redshift) and the local galaxy environment. The survey covers a 2 square degree equatorial field with spectroscopy and X-ray to radio imaging by most of the major space-based telescopes and a number of large ground based telescopes. Over 2 million galaxies are detected, spanning 75% of the age of the Universe. COSMOS is led by Peter Capak and involves more than 200 scientists in a dozen countries. More information on the COSMOS team members can be found here.
On 24-28th March 2018 the International Astronomical Union (IAU) held its huge Communicating Astronomy with the Public (CAP2018) conference in Fukuoka, Japan. COSMOS was represented at the meeting by team member Jacinta Delhaize from the University of Zagreb, who gave a talk on the various public outreach and communications initiatives of COSMOS.
She spoke about the various successes and challenges of engaging the public in such a large multi-national, multi-wavelength astronomical consortium. This is important because we think our data and science is great and we want to share it with everyone! The main challenge is that our astronomers, therefore the members of the public who we are trying to reach, are dispersed throughout the world over many different time zones and languages.
Therefore we mainly communicate our science using online platforms. We have this website and a presence on Facebook, Twitter and You Tube. We use these platforms to share our video blogs, news, press releases and more.
Stepping away from the virtual realm, we have our wonderful Artist-in-Residence Karel Nel, who creates renowned artworks inspired by COSMOS research. We also sometimes run public Astronomy on Tap events at the pub alongside our annual team meetings.
If you have any feedback or suggestions about other initiatives or website content you'd like to see, please let us know!
Jacinta presents the COSMOS public outreach and communication initiatives at the IAU'S CAP2018 conference in Fukuoka, Japan.
The DEIMOS 10K spectroscopic catalog contains 10718 object out to z = 6 in the COSMOS field observed through multi-slit spectroscopy with the Deep Imaging Multi-Object Spectrograph (DEIMOS) on the Keck II telescope. The objects have been selected from a variety of input catalogs based on multi-wavelength observations in the field, and thus have a diverse selection function, which enables the study of the diversity in the galaxy population.
The distribution of redshifts and K-band magnitudes of galaxies in the DEIMOS 10K spectroscopic catalog. The colors (stacked per bin) indicate the different target samples from which the galaxies have been selected.