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Astron. Astrophys. 346, L21-L24 (1999)

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1. Introduction

Recently, a second HST deep field has been observed in the southern hemisphere (HDF-S; Williams et al. 1999, in preparation). The STIS field was chosen to contain the QSO J2233-606 ([FORMULA], [FORMULA]; Boyle 1997). Both deep imaging of the QSO field and spectroscopy of the QSO itself have been obtained (Gardner et al. 1999, Ferguson et al. 1999). Low- and high-dispersion spectra from ground-based telescopes are also already available (Outram et al. 1998, Savaglio 1998, Sealey et al. 1998). This set of data offers a unique opportunity to address important questions related to the connection between galaxies and QSO absorption lines, including the absorption cross-section of faint galaxies and the structure of the inter-galactic medium over the redshift range 1.2-2.2. Spectroscopy of the brightest galaxies in the full HDF-S, selected from our I-band ground-based image, has been performed on the ESO-NTT by a collaboration assembled under the auspices of a European Training and Mobility of Researchers (TMR) network. Here we comment on the galaxies closest to J2233-606 and discuss their possible relation with spectral features of J2233-606.

Sect. 2 briefly presents the target selection, observation and data reduction, with emphasis on objects close to J2233-606. In Sect. 3 we analyse their relevance to absorption lines in the J2233-606 spectrum. In Sect. 4 we draw our conclusions. Throughout the paper, we adopt [FORMULA] km s-1 Mpc-1 and [FORMULA].

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© European Southern Observatory (ESO) 1999

Online publication: May 21, 1999