Published online by Cambridge University Press: 25 May 2016
We report on a survey of 25 candidate old LMC clusters. Washington photometry was obtained on the CTIO 0.9m in < 1 h , reaching below the turnoff. Ages based on the magnitude difference δT 1 between the giant branch clump and the turnoff revealed that no new old clusters were found. The candidates all turned out to be of intermediate age (1–3 Gyr). We confirm that there was apparently no cluster formation in the LMC from 3–9 Gyr ago, and that there was a pronounced epoch of cluster formation beginning 3 Gyrs ago that peaked at ~1.5 Gyrs ago. We also determine ages for the surrounding fields, as well as metallicities for both the clusters and fields from the color of the giant branch. In most cases the stellar population of each cluster is quite similar to that of its field. The mean metallicity for the intermediate age outer disk clusters is −0.65. A few clusters stand out in the age-metallicity relation in the sense that they are intermediate age clusters at relatively low metallicity. In the northern part of the LMC disk 3 fields all have a secondary clump ~0.45 mag fainter than the dominant clump, suggesting a component located behind the LMC at a distance comparable to that of the SMC.
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