List of current photometric time-series surveys?

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Does anyone know of any consolidated lists of existing wide-field time-series photometric surveys? There are a number of well-known ones such as PTF, CRTS, ASAS, etc, but I am trying to assemble a relatively comprehensive list. I am mainly interested in those that will overlap at least somewhat with the LSST magnitude regime, so I am skipping the transit surveys like SuperWASP and HATNet where the faint end is brighter than the LSST bright end.


I’m involved in the GOTO project (, whose first phase will have a field-of-view of about 20 sq. deg and will go down to a limiting magnitude of about 19-20. Without looking it up, I don’t know how well this overlaps with the LSST magnitude range. A major component of the project is to conduct an LSST-style high-cadance survey, which we anticipate will survey the whole sky to the above depth every few weeks. We anticipate first light within the next couple of weeks (followed by the usual commissioning etc etc).

While we’re developing our own in-house processing pipeline for GOTO, we are also actively working on adapting the LSST stack to process GOTO data. As such, we think it could be an interesting “live” testbed for the stack for time-series surveys.

Let me know if this sounds of interest to you.

Thanks James. This is definitely of interest. What is the current state of the project? It would useful to know the vital stats for it, including the following:

  • bright limit
  • faint limit
  • cadence
  • sky coverage area
  • time baseline
  • filters

The faint limit is the only quantity I can find now.

Also, if anyone else has additional surveys that are currently working or have already completed, with public data sets, please let me know.

@rstreet is there a list of the survey represented at the recent meeting at NOAO?

Sorry for the slow response on this. I’ve tried to answer as many of your questions as possible:

  • Bright limit: Not 100% sure, our simulations are saturating at about 12-14th mag.
  • Faint limit: Single pointing: around 20-21st mag; stacked (i.e., coadded) maybe 22-23mag.
  • cadance: At first, whole observable sky roughly roughly 2 weeks, reducing to about 1 week with the second phase (likely around a year from now).
  • sky coverage area: 3pi steradians
  • time baseline: Meaning?
  • filters: Predominately a single broad filter covering R, G and B, but it is also equipped with standard r, g, and b filters which we’ll conduct less regular surveys in (~monthly).

Thanks James, this is great. For the time baseline, I was referring to the amount of time between the first observation of a typical target and the most recent or predicted final observation. Since this is an ongoing survey, maybe the answer is that it is indefinite, but even the number for the expected first public data release would be very useful.

Yes - it’s an ongoing survey, so it’ll be indefinite.

I’m afraid I’m not aware of any discussions or decisions within the collaboration for public data releases (it’s a very small collaboration and all our current efforts are focussed on getting the telescope set up and analysing data). I can raise this at the next opportunity and get back to you. It’s certainly something I’ll be advocating.