Quasi-stellar objects (quasars) located behind nearby galaxies provide an excellent absolute reference system for astrometric studies, but they are difficult to identify because of fore- and background contamination. We have embarked on a programme to expand the quasar reference system behind the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds, the Magellanic Bridge and Magellanic Stream. Hundreds of quasar candidates were selected, based on their near-infrared colours and variability properties from the ESO VISTA Magellanic Clouds (VMC) Public Survey. A subset of 49 objects was followed up with optical spectroscopy with FORS2. We confirmed the quasar nature of 37 objects (34 new identifications) that span a redshift range from z ~ 0.5 to 4.1.
|Number of pages||3|
|Publication status||Published - Mar 2016|