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ESO Online Digitized Sky Survey


The Online Digitized Sky Surveys server at the ESO Archive provides access to the DSS1 and DSS2 surveys produced at the Space Telescope Science Institute through its Guide Star Survey group. The images of these surveys are based on photographic data obtained using the Oschin Schmidt Telescope on Palomar Mountain and the UK Schmidt Telescope. The plates were processed into the present compressed digital form with the permission of these institutions. See the copyright notices. Other versions of DSS are available from the STSci - DSS form and the CADC - DSS form.

The entire DSS1 and DSS2 data are stored on magnetic disks. Retrieval time takes less than 5 seconds for any field less than 20 arcmin in size.

A client to access the DSS-1 and DSS-2 at ESO directly from your computer (without Web browser) is available here. The client can also be used in batch mode, so as to submit multiple requests with a single command.

An implementation of the Simple Image Access Protocol (SIAP, an IVOA standard) is also available. Check the service metadata.

Query Form

Please enter a position in the R.A. and Dec. fields (J2000) OR an astronomical object name in the Object Name field. You can select an image size up to 1600 square arcminutes (2.5 Kbytes/square arcminute).

Coordinates: R.A. : (hh mm ss) Dec. : (±dd mm ss)
Coordinate System: J2000 B1950
Object Name: (will be resolved by Simbad. )
Image Size: X (arcminutes) Y (arcminutes)
Output format:
Information on DSS output formats and MIME types is available.


DSS2-blue: 45% of the sky

DSS2-red: 98% of the sky

DSS2-infrared: 99% of the sky

Source: Fig. 3 in R.Morbidelli, 2013, OATO, INAF.
Also online at CADC DSS, though preference goes to the bands as shown above.
Survey CodeEpoch Emulsio/FilterBandDepthDeclination Zone Availability
POSS II J XJ 1987-98 IIIaK+GG395 Bj 22.5 00..90 905/923
POSS II R XP 1987-98 IIIAF+RG610 R 20.8 00..90 905/953
SERC/J/FJ S 1975-88 IIIaJ+GG395 Bj 23.0 -90..-20 1212/1441
SERC FR FR 1984-98 IIIaF+OG590 R 22.0 -15..00 289/290
AAO SFS XS 1990-98 IIIaF+OG590 R 22.0 -90..-20 618/643
SERC QV XV 1986-88 IIaD+GG495 V 14.0 S.Galactic Plane 189/189
POSS I O XO 1950-58 103aO B 21.0 -30..90 830/960
Palomar QV N 1983-85 IIaD+W12 V 19.5 06..90 611/618
Special XX 1979-85 IIIaJ+GG495 V - selected objects 6/6
POSS II N XI 1987-98 IV-N+RG9 I 19.5 00..90 887/899
SERC I IS 1990-98 IV-N+RG715 I 19.5 -90..00 893/900
AAO SR GR 1996-99 IIIaF+OG590 R 20.0 S.Galactic Plane 121/121
POSS I E XE 1950-58 103aE R 20.0 -30..90 1134/1157
GPO Astrograph XG 1950-58 - - - - 17/17

Above table: from Lasker et al, 1990: AJ 99, 2019, Lasker, B.M., Sturch, C.R., McClean, B.J., Russell, J.L., Jekner, H., and Shara, M.M.
band plate filter Lambda0(angstrom)FWHM(angstrom)
J(UK Schmidt) IIIaJ GG395 4500 1500
D IIaD none 5610 3200
V495 IIaD GG495 5650 1400
V12 IIaD W12 5760 1140

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