I. Introduction

6. Referencing WISE and NEOWISE

a. WISE Source Naming Convention

Source designations for objects in WISE Catalog and Databases conform to the recommendations outlined in International Astronomical Union's specifications concerning designations for astronomical radiation sources outside the solar system. Source designations should be given as:

WISExy Jhhmmss.ss±ddmmss.s

The decimal parts of the RA seconds and Declination arcseconds are truncated rather than rounded, per the IAU recommendation. The coordinate sequence is the sexagesimal J2000-equinox RA and declination, hence the "J" designator.

CAUTION: Coordinates extracted from the designation column are less precise than those given in the right ascension and declination columns of the source Catalog and Databases. The use of designation coordinates will result in a maximum (unsigned) error of 0.0996" in declination and a maximum (unsigned degree) error of 0.1488" in right ascension.

The WISE part of the acronym is used to identify source information derived from WISE data. The xy part of the acronym distinguishes the data processing provenance and exact data products from which the source information is drawn. The set of acronyms are as follows:

For objects derived from first-pass WISE data processing
WISEPFor objects in the Preliminary Release Source Catalog
WISEPFFor objects in the Preliminary Release Single-Exposure Source Working Database
WISEPAaFor objects in the preliminary release Atlas Tile Source Working Database
WISEPCaFor objects in the first-pass processing operations coadd Source Working Database
WISEWFbFor objects in the Preliminary Release Post-Cryo Single-Exposure Source Working Database
For objects derived from second-pass WISE data processing
WISEFor objects in the All-Sky Release Source Catalog
WISERFor objects in the All-Sky Release Reject Table
WISEAFFor objects in the All-Sky Release Single-Exposure Source Working Database
WISETFor objects in the 3-Band Cryo Source Catalog
WISETRFor objects in the 3-Band Cryo Reject Table
WISETFFor objects in the 3-Band Cryo Single-Exposure Source Working Database

a - These product were used internally for validation, analysis and some early pilot science investigations, but are not released.
b - The WISE Post-Cryo data have undergone only first-pass Scan/Frame processing even though their release follows the All-Sky Data Release.

The acronym designation is not carried explicitly for entries in the Catalogs to save space. The coordinate sequence is tabulated for each source and is included in the designation field for each source in the Catalogs.

For example, the complete designations for two sources in the WISE Preliminary Release Source Catalog are:

WISEP J073435.74+315316.1      (= Gem)


WISEP J024240.69-000047.8      (= NGC 1068)

Last Update: 2012 March 15

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