White Dwarfs in the European Galactic Plane Surveys (EGAPS)
The space density of white dwarfs is highly uncertain even nearby. This results from the fact that the known sample of white dwarfs is largely in- complete in part because most white dwarfs have been discovered as by-products in non-dedicated surveys. In order to obtain more accurate white dwarf space densities and scale heights we must build up a complete sample of white dwarfs. The European Galactic Plane Surveys (EGAPS) are the best database to search for white dwarfs as they will provide broad band (U, g′, r′, i′) and narrow band (Hα and HeI) measurements for one per cent of all the stars in the Galaxy. By looking at the Galactic Plane, where most stars are, we ensure that we are ob- taining a complete sample. The space densities obtained from EGAPS can then be compared with those found in high latitude surveys such as the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS). The methods used to identify white dwarfs using the colours available in EGAPS are described and some preliminary results presented.