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The first data release from the LOFAR Two-metre Sky Survey (LoTSS)

Submitter: Timothy Shimwell
Description: Today the first full quality LOFAR Two-metre Sky Survey (LoTSS) data release was published. With a resolution of 6arcsec and a median sensitivity of 0.07mJy/beam, this survey is an order of magnitude more sensitive than any comparable survey and has significantly higher resolution. Even though the published images cover only 2% of the Northern sky they have a source density that is 10 times larger larger than any other very wide area radio survey and contain 318,520 sources. For 72% of these sources we have identified the optical/IR counterparts and for 51% we have also been able to estimate the redshift. These images and catalogues are now all publicly available.

The data release, which is described in 3 papers, was published in a special edition of Astronomy & Astrophysics and was accompanied by 23 further papers from the LOFAR surveys collaboration. Over 200 astronomers from 18 countries contributed to these articles. The papers span a range of topics and present results in areas including: galaxy clusters, active galactic nuclei, nearby galaxies, radio recombination lines, cosmic magnetic fields and data processing.

The survey is now over 30% complete and we are only beginning to scratch the surface of the scientific potential of this rich dataset.

More details can be found on the LOFAR surveys webpage -- https://lofar-surveys.org/
Copyright: The LOFAR surveys team
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