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About the WFPDB

“Sooner or later everybody finds me…”

The Wide-Field Plate Database (WFPDB) contains the descriptive information for the professional astronomical wide-field (>1°) photographic observations stored in numerous archives all over the world. The total number of these observations, obtained since the end of last century (about 130 years ago) by the help of more then 200 instruments (telescopes) is about 2 500 000 from 572 archives
(see please Catalogue of the Wide-Field Plate Archives) and
Catalogue of ALL Wide-Field Plate Archives in the WFPDB

The WFPDB is in preparation, providing currently access to the information for about 600 000 plates from 136 plate archives (25% of the estimated total number of wide-field plates):
List of Wide-Field Plate Catalogues Included in the WFPDB
(Processed and downloaded for about 1.5 min.)

Search and sampling from the WFPDB is possible by equatorial coordinates and observation time (UT), as well as by the following instrument and observation parameters: instrument type and aperture, plate scale and size, object/field designation, method of observation, emulsion, filter type, exposure time. With the exception of coordinates and time, searches by any of the other observation parameters may be seriously affected by missing data in the original plate catalogues, constituting the WFPDB. Data retrieval for the plate quality and availability, notes and observer is also possible, while the data for the plate digitalisation is not available yet. On-line search in WFPDB via INTERNET is possible via VizieR (see Search in the WFPDB - catalogue number VI/90) and via search browser developed in Sofia by Damyan Kalaglarsky.


Tsvetkov,M.K.,1992, IAU Working Group on Wide-field Imaging Newsletter No. 2, p. 51.

Tsvetkov, M.K., Stavrev, K.Y., Tsvetkova, K.P., Ivanov, P.V., Iliev, M.S. 1994, Proc. IAU Symp. 161 "Astronomy from Wide-Field Imaging", eds. H.T. MacGillivray, E.B. Thomson, B.M. Lasker, I.N. Reid, D.F. Malin, R. M. West and H. Lorenz (Kluwer, Dordrecht), p. 359.

Tsvetkov, M.K., Stavrev, K.Y., Tsvetkova, K.P., Mutafov, A.S. 1995, Lecture Notes in Physics, v. 454, Flares and Flashes, IAU Colloquium 151, Eds. Jochen Greiner, Hilmar W. Duerbeck, Roald E. Gershberg, Springer Verlag, p. 412.

Send mail to: tsvetkov at skyarchive.org

Created: September 1996
Last update: March 6th, 2017

Back to: WFPDB web site