Our knowledge of the faint end of the stellar luminosity function has been limited until relatively recently to the local region within 10 pc of the sun, encompassing stars within a broad range of metallicities and population types. Large areas could be covered with photographic plate proper motion surveys, for example, but only to modest limiting magnitudes. CCDs covering over 300 square arcminutes and capable of 27th magnitude stellar photometry are now becoming common on large telescopes. Although the sky coverage is limited, very deep multicolor CCD surveys are currently being exploited as a means of sampling the population of intrinsically faintest stars out to distances approximating the M-dwarf disk scale height. The importance of proper color calibration of these CCD surveys to statistical studies of M star populations will be emphasized. A comparison will be made between the findings of one recent and one on-going deep 4-meter CCD survey of high galactic latitude fields with the predictions of the solar neighborhood luminosity functions of Dahn et al. 1986, AJ 91, 621; Henry and McCarthy 1993, AJ 106, 773; and Kirkpatrick et al. 1994, Ap.J.Supp., in press.
American Astronomical Society Meeting Abstracts #184
- Pub Date:
- May 1994