Optical validation and characterization of Planck PSZ2 sources at the Canary Islands observatories: II. Second year of LP15 observations

A. Aguado-Barahona, R. Barrena, A. Streblyanska, A. Ferragamo, J. A. Rubiño-Martín, D. Tramonte, H. Lietzen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)


Context. The second legacy catalog of Planck Sunyaev-Zeldovich (SZ) sources, hereafter PSZ2, provides the largest galaxy cluster sample selected by means of the SZ signature of the clusters in a full sky survey. In order to fully characterize this PSZ2 sample for cosmological studies, all the members should be validated and the physical properties of the clusters, including mass and redshift, should be derived. However, at the time of its publication, roughly 21% of the 1653 PSZ2 members had no known counterpart at other wavelengths. Aims. Here, we present the second and last year of observations of our optical follow-up program 128-MULTIPLE-16/15B (hereafter LP15), which has been developed with the aim of validating all the unidentified PSZ2 sources in the northern sky with declinations higher than -15° that have no correspondence in the first Planck catalog PSZ1. The description of the program and the first year of observations have been presented previously. Methods. The LP15 program was awarded 44 observing nights that were spread over two years with the Isaac Newton Telescope (INT), the Telescopio Nazionale Galileo (TNG), and the Gran Telescopio Canarias (GTC), all at Roque de los Muchachos Observatory (La Palma). Following the same method as described previously, we performed deep optical imaging for more than 200 sources with the INT and spectroscopy for almost 100 sources with the TNG and GTC at the end of the LP15 program. We adopted robust confirmation criteria based on velocity dispersion and richness estimates for the final classification of the new galaxy clusters as the optical counterparts of the PSZ2 detections. Results. Here, we present the observations of the second year of LP15, as well as the final results of the program. The full LP15 sample comprises 190 previously unidentified PSZ2 sources. Of these, 106 objects were studied before, while the remaining sample (except for 6 candidates) has been completed in the second year and is discussed here. In addition to the LP15 sample, we here study 42 additional PSZ2 objects that were originally validated as real clusters because they matched a WISE or PSZ1 counterpart, but they had no measured spectroscopic redshift. In total, we confirm the optical counterparts for 81 PSZ2 sources after the full LP15 program, 55 of them with new spectroscopic information. Forty of these 81 clusters are presented in this paper. After the LP15 observational program the purity of the PSZ2 catalog has increased from 76.7% originally to 86.2%. In addition, we study the possible reasons for false detection, and we report a clear correlation between the number of unconfirmed sources and galactic thermal dust emission.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberA148
JournalAstronomy and Astrophysics
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • Catalogs
  • Galaxies: clusters: general
  • Large-scale structure of Universe


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