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For refcode 1998MNRAS.301..881E:
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Copyright by Royal Astronomical Society. 1998MNRAS.301..881E The ROSAT Brightest Cluster Sample - I. The compilation of the sample and the cluster log N-log S distribution H. Ebeling, A. C. Edge, H. Bohringer, S. W. Allen, C. S. Crawford, A. C. Fabian, W. Voges and J. P. Huchra Accepted 1998 June 29. Received 1998 June 18: in original form 1996 August 13 ABSTRACT We present a 90 per cent flux-complete sample of the 201 X-ray-brightest clusters of galaxies in the northern hemisphere ({delta} >= 0^deg^), at high Galactic latitudes (|b| >= 20^deg^), with measured redshifts z < 0.3 and fluxes higher than 4.4 x 10^-12^ erg cm^-2^ s^-1^ in the 0.1-2.4 keV band. The sample, called the ROSAT Brightest Cluster Sample (BCS), is selected from ROSAT All-Sky Survey data and is the largest X-ray-selected cluster sample compiled to date. In addition to Abell clusters, which form the bulk of the sample, the BCS also contains the X-ray-brightest Zwicky clusters and other clusters selected from their X-ray properties alone. Effort has been made to ensure the highest possible completeness of the sample and the smallest possible contamination by non-cluster X-ray sources. X-ray fluxes are computed using an algorithm tailored for the detection and characterization of X-ray emission from galaxy clusters. These fluxes are accurate to better than 15 per cent (mean 1{sigma} error). We find the cumulative log N-log S distribution of clusters to follow a power law k S^-{alpha}^ with {alpha} = 1.31_-0.03_^+0.06^ (errors are the 10th and 90th percentiles) down to fluxes of 2 x 10^-12^ erg cm^-2^ s^-1^, i.e. considerably below the BCS flux limit. Although our best-fitting slope disagrees formally with the canonical value of -1.5 for a Euclidean distribution, the BCS log N-log S distribution is consistent with a non- evolving cluster population if cosmological effects are taken into account. Our sample will allow us to examine large-scale structure in the northern hemisphere. determine the spatial cluster-cluster correlation function, investigate correlations between the X-ray and optical properties of the clusters, establish the X-ray luminosity function for galaxy clusters, and discuss the implications of the results for cluster evolution. Key words: catalogues - surveys - galaxies: clusters: general - cosmology: observations - large-scale structure of Universe - X-rays: galaxies.
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