The XMM-Newton-Blanco Cosmology Survey project (XMM-BCS) is a coordinated X-ray, optical and mid-infrared cluster survey in a field also covered by Sunyaev-Zel'dovich effect (SZE) surveys by the South Pole Telescope and the Atacama Cosmology Telescope. The aim of the project is to study the cluster population in a 14 deg2 field (center: α ≈ 23:29:18.4, δ ≈-54:40:33.6). The uniform multi-wavelength coverage will also allow us for the first time to comprehensively compare the selection function of the different cluster detection approaches in a single test field and perform a cross-calibration of cluster scaling relations. In this work, we present a catalog of 46 X-ray selected clusters from the initial 6 deg2 survey core. We describe the XMM-BCS source detection pipeline and derive physical properties of the clusters. We provide photometric redshift estimates derived from the BCS imaging data and spectroscopic redshift measurements for a low redshift subset of the clusters. The photometric redshift estimates are found to be unbiased and in good agreement with the spectroscopic values. Our multi-wavelength approach gives us a comprehensive look at the cluster and group population up to redshifts z ≈ 1. The median redshift of the sample is 0.47 and the median mass M500 ≈ 1 × 1014 M ⊙ (∼2 keV). From the sample, we derive the cluster log N-log S using an approximation to the survey selection function and find it in good agreement with previous studies. We compare optical mass estimates from the Southern Cosmology Survey available for part of our cluster sample with our estimates derived from the X-ray luminosity. Weak lensing masses available for a subset of the cluster sample are in agreement with our estimates. Optical masses based on cluster richness and total optical luminosity are found to be significantly higher than the X-ray values. The present results illustrate the excellent potential of medium-deep, X-ray surveys to deliver cluster samples for cosmological modelling. Incombination with available multi-wavelength data in optical, near-infrared and SZE, this will allow us to probe the dependence of the selection functions on relevant cluster observables and provide thus an important input for upcoming large-area multi-wavelength cluster surveys.
- galaxies: clusters: general
- large-scale structure of Universe