The Deep Ecliptic Survey (DES) is a project to find Kuiper belt objects (KBOs), using the facilities of the National Optical Astronomy Observatory (NOAO). The principal investigator is Robert L. Millis.
Since 1998 through the end of 2003, the survey covered 550 square degrees with sensitivity of 22.5, which means an estimated 50% of objects of this magnitude have been found.
The survey has also established the mean Kuiper Belt plane and introduced new formal definitions of the dynamical classes of Kuiper belt objects.
The remarkable first observations and/or discoveries include: