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SkyMapper Protected Science Project

Extremely metal-poor stars in the Galactic bulge

Martin Asplund (RSAA), Louise Howes (RSAA), Stefan Keller (RSAA), David Yong (RSAA), David Nataf (RSAA)

The very oldest as well as the most metal-poor stars are predicted to now reside in the central regions of galaxies such as the Milky Way bulge. The Galactic bulge is however in general metal-rich and very crowded, making an unbiased survey for such first stars candidates highly inefficient: only 0.1% of bulge stars have [Fe/H]<-2. We are using SkyMapper uvgriz photometry to pre-select metal-poor star candidates that are subsequently follow-up spectroscopically with AAOmega/AAT to confirm their metal-poor nature. The most interesting extremely metal-poor stars are then observed with 8-10m telescopes such as VLT and Magellan to determine the chemical compositions in detail to enable a comparison with Galactic metal-poor halo stars.