The INT/WFC Photometric Hα Survey of the Northern Galactic Plane (IPHAS) is a 1800 deg2 imaging survey covering Galactic latitudes |b| <5° and longitudes ℓ = 30°-215° in the r, i, and Hα filters using the Wide Field Camera (WFC) on the 2.5-m Isaac Newton Telescope (INT) in La Palma. We present the first quality-controlled and globally calibrated source catalogue derived from the survey, providing single-epoch photometry for 219 million unique sources across 92 per cent of the footprint. The observations were carried out between 2003 and 2012 at a median seeing of 1.1 arcsec (sampled at 0.33 arcsec pixel-1) and to a mean 5σ depth of 21.2 (r), 20.0 (i), and 20.3 (Hα) in the Vega magnitude system.We explain the data reduction and quality control procedures, describe and test the global re-calibration, and detail the construction of the new catalogue. We show that the new calibration is accurate to 0.03 mag(root mean square) and recommend a series of quality criteria to select accurate data from the catalogue. Finally, we demonstrate the ability of the catalogue's unique (r - Hα, r - i) diagram to (i) characterize stellar populations and extinction regimes towards different Galactic sightlines and (ii) select and quantify Hα emission-line objects. IPHAS is the first survey to offer comprehensive CCD photometry of point sources across the Galactic plane at visible wavelengths, providing the much-needed counterpart to recent infrared surveys.
- stars: emission-line
- Galaxy: stellar content