Survey Overview

UNCOVER official program info

UNCOVER is a JWST Cycle 1 public Treasury survey that will obtain deep NIRCam multiband imaging and ultradeep low-resolution NIRSpec/PRISM spectroscopy of the Frontier Field Abell 2744.

Thanks to the strong lensing boost and the deep observations, UNCOVER will be uniquely positioned to address two core JWST science goals: identifying first-light galaxies at z>10, and characterizing the ultra-low luminosity galaxies that drive reionization at z~6-7. Other science enabled by UNCOVER include stellar mass complete studies to z~10; probing the role of dust at high redshift; and the various pathways of quenching star formation out to early times.

Deep NIRCam / 7 filters 1-5 microns to ~30AB

Ultradeep NIRSpec/PRISM R~100 from 0.6-5 um spectroscopy to ~29AB


51hr primary / 49hr parallel (71 hours with overheads)
Deep NIRCam (4-6 hours) / 7 filters 1-5 microns to ~30AB (F115W, F150W, F200W, F227W, F356W, F410M, F444W)
Ultradeep NIRSpec/PRISM R~30-300 from 0.6-5 microns spectroscopy to ~29AB (up to 20 hours/object)

First Galaxies

The integrated star formation history is barely constrained at z≳8, and very few galaxies at z>10 are currently known. The deep UNCOVER imaging (to 30AB) and spectra (continuum to 29AB) will enable us to constrain the physical properties of these first-light galaxies, including their star formation efficiency.


Current studies disagree about the faint end slope of the z~6 UV luminosity function. The deep and high spatial resolution observations from UNCOVER will resolve this question through detailed constraints on the faint end slope. Additionally, UNCOVER spectra of faint Lyman Break Galaxies will constrain the ionizing photon production rate and the escape fraction at the epoch of reionization.

Mass complete studies out to z~10

A key test for galaxy formation models is the evolution of the stellar mass function, but probing the faint end slope at high redshift requires ultra-deep data. With UNCOVER, we will be able to probe the full stellar mass function out to z=10, which will place constraints on the stellar mass-halo mass relation and thus the overall efficiency of galaxy formation.

Quenching to low mass and high redshift

At low redshift, satellite quenching leads to an upturn in the quiescent galaxy number density distribution. Current HST/Spitzer observations are not deep enough to probe whether this upturn is also in place at higher redshifts, as might be expected from the old (≳7 Gyr) ages for dwarf ellipticals in the local Universe. The deep UNCOVER imaging and spectra will allow us to identify and characterize quiescent satellites as soon as they emerge, enabling a full picture of satellite quenching over cosmic time.

Dusty galaxies at z>4

Though dusty star-formation dominates the SFR density below z~2, dust is not expected to play a large role at earlier times. However, dusty star formation is not well constrained at z>3. UNCOVER will detect any obscured galaxy with mass >109 M out to z=9, if they exist, and can spectroscopically confirm this population to 28 AB mag.

Data releases


Please cite the survey paper (Bezanson et al. 2022) for any publications using UNCOVER data products, as well the other publications noted for specific releases.

For Data Release 3 and later: for all data products that use Medium Band and F070W/F090W observations from the MegaScience survey (GO-4111; PI:Suess), please also cite the MegaScience survey paper (Suess et al. 2024) in any publications using UNCOVER+MegaScience data products.

Data Release 3

MegaScience medium band+UNCOVER photometric catalog release; MegaScience+UNCOVER mosaic release
(Suess et al. 2024, April 22, 2024)

Data Release 2

Updated NIRCam primary / NIRISS parallel mosaic release
(Bezanson et al. 2022, July 13, 2023)

Lens model updated release
(Furtak et al. 2023, v1.1 update: July 25, 2023)

Updated photometric catalogs release
(Weaver et al. 2024, September 29, 2023)

Stellar population catalogs release
(Wang et al. 2024, October 2, 2023; DR2.1: December 8, 2023)

DUALZ Survey: ALMA Catalogs and Maps in Abell 2744
(Fujimoto et al. 2023, v1.0, September 14, 2023)

Data Release 1

NIRCam primary / NIRISS parallel mosaic release
(Bezanson et al. 2022, December 7, 2022)

UNCOVER Abell 2744 lens model release
(Furtak et al. 2023, December 14, 2022; v1.1 update: July 25, 2023)

Initial photometric catalogs release
(Weaver et al. 2024, January 9, 2023)


  1. The JWST UNCOVER Treasury survey: Ultradeep NIRSpec and NIRCam ObserVations before the Epoch of Reionization

    • Bezanson, R., Labbe, I., Whitaker, K. E., et al., 2022, arXiv:2212.04026
  2. UNCOVERing the extended strong lensing structures of Abell 2744 with the deepest JWST imaging

    • Furtak, L. J., Zitrin, A., Weaver, J. R., et al., 2023, MNRAS 523 4568
  3. JWST UNCOVER: Extremely Red and Compact Object at zphot ≃ 7.6 Triply Imaged by A2744

    • Furtak, L. J., Zitrin, A., Plat A., et al., 2022, ApJ 952 142
  4. The UNCOVER Survey: A First-look HST + JWST Catalog of 60,000 Galaxies near A2744 and beyond

    • Weaver, J. R., Cutler, S. E., Pan, R., et al., 2024, ApJS 270 7
  5. JWST UNCOVER: Discovery of z > 9 Galaxy Candidates Behind the Lensing Cluster Abell 2744

    • Atek, H., Chemerynska, I., Wang, B., et al., 2023, MNRAS 524 5486
  6. UNCOVER: Candidate Red Active Galactic Nuclei at 3<z<7 with JWST and ALMA

    • Labbe, I., Greene, J. E., Bezanson, R., et al., 2023, arXiv:2306.07320
  7. UNCOVER: The growth of the first massive black holes from JWST/NIRSpec – spectroscopic confirmation of an X-ray luminous AGN at z=10.1

    • Goulding, A. D., Greene, J. E., Setton, D. J., et al., 2023, ApJL 955 L24
  8. UNCOVER: Illuminating the Early Universe – JWST/NIRSpec Confirmation of z>12 Galaxies

    • Wang, B., Fujimoto, S. , Labbe, I., et al., 2023, ApJL 957 L34
  9. A supermassive black hole in the early universe growing in the shadows

    • Furtak, L. J., Labbe, I., Zitrin, A., et al., 2024, Nature 628 57
  10. Most of the photons that reionized the Universe came from dwarf galaxies

    • Atek, H., Labbe, I., Furtak, L. J., et al., 2024 Nature 626 975
  11. UNCOVER: A NIRSpec Census of Lensed Galaxies at z=8.50-13.08 Probing a High AGN Fraction and Ionized Bubbles in the Shadow

    • Fujimoto, S., Wang, B., Weaver, J., et al., 2023, arXiv:2308.11609
  12. UNCOVER: A NIRSpec Identification of a Broad Line AGN at z = 8.50

    • Kokorev, V., Fujimoto, S., Labbe, I., et al., 2023, ApJL 957 L7
  13. UNCOVER: JWST Spectroscopy of Three Cold Brown Dwarfs at Kiloparsec-scale Distances

    • Burgasser, A. J., Bezanson, R., Labbe, I., et al., 2024, ApJ 962 177
  14. UNCOVER Spectroscopy Confirms the Surprising Ubiquity of Active Galactic Nuclei in Red Sources at z > 5

    • Greene, J. E., Labbe, I., Goulding, A. D., et al., 2024, ApJ 964 39
  15. DUALZ – Deep UNCOVER-ALMA Legacy High-Z Survey

    • Fujimoto, S., Bezanson, R., Labbe, I., et al., 2023, arXiv:2309.07834
  16. The UNCOVER Survey: A First-Look HST+JWST Catalog of Galaxy Redshifts and Stellar Populations Properties Spanning 0.2≲z≲15

    • Wang, B., Leja, J., Labbe, I., et al., 2024, ApJS 270 12
  17. UNCOVER: The rest ultraviolet to near infrared multiwavelength structures and dust distributions of sub-millimeter-detected galaxies in Abell 2744

    • Price, S. H., Suess, K. A., Williams, C. C., et al., 2023, arXiv:2310.02500
  18. Quantifying the Effects of Known Unknowns on Inferred High-redshift Galaxy Properties: Burstiness, IMF, and Nebular Physics

    • Wang, B., Leja, J., Atek, H., et al., 2024, ApJ 963 74
  19. JWST UNCOVER: The Overabundance of Ultraviolet-luminous Galaxies at z>9

    • Chemerynska, I., Atek, H., Furtak, L. J., et al., 2023, arXiv:2312.05030
  20. UNCOVER NIRSpec/PRISM Spectroscopy Unveils Evidence of Early Core Formation in a Massive, Centrally Dusty Quiescent Galaxy at zspec=3.97

    • Setton, D. J., Khullar, G., Miller, T. B., et al., 2024, arXiv:2402.05664
  21. Medium Bands, Mega Science: a JWST/NIRCam Medium-Band Imaging Survey of Abell 2744

    • Suess, K. A., Weaver, J. R., Price, S. H., et al., 2024, arXiv:2404.13132


Send us an email at jwstuncover - at - !