Opening a Window of Discovery on the Dynamic Universe

Community Science with LSST

Special Session at the 217th AAS Meeting: January 10, 2011, 2:00pm-3:30pm

Session Description:

As the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) moves closer to operations, the astronomical community is gearing up to take maximum advantage of the unprecedented opportunity LSST provides. This AAS Special Session gives astronomers a preview of the available data products and interfaces as well as a discussion of the transformative science enabled by LSST.

Hundreds of scientists have come together to form 11 science collaboration teams and write a 600-page book detailing some of the breakthrough science that LSST will enable.

Simulated data and user interfaces are under development allowing the exploration of issues such as classification of transients and follow-up observations, needed to ensure high productivity of LSST during its early operation.

Science collaboration team members will share with the broad community their results of working with LSST tools and simulated data to plan their own science investigations in preparation for LSST. The process for membership in LSST science collaborations will be outlined to encourage increased participation. LSST will open new frontiers due to its ability to go faint, fast, and wide simultaneously. The 30 terabytes of pipeline processed data obtained each night will open the time domain window on the deep optical universe for variability and motion. Rarely observed events will become commonplace, new and unanticipated phenomena will be discovered. Twenty trillion photometric measurements will be made on 20 billion objects. The deep coverage of 10 billion galaxies provides unique capabilities for cosmology. Astrometry, 6-band photometry, and time domain data on 10 billion stars will enable studies of Galactic structure. For US and Chilean scientists, all LSST data will be non-proprietary (open-data and open-source), with public accessibility and usability a high priority. Transient alerts will be issued worldwide within 60 seconds of first detection, and we are working with international groups towards our goal of world access to all LSST data products.

Session Chair:

Dr. J. Anthony Tyson, UC Davis

Confirmed Speaker List

Dr. Donald W. Sweeney, LSST Corporation: System Overview (10 minutes)

Dr. Michael A. Strauss, Princeton University: LSST Science Collaborations (15 mins)

Dr. Beth Willman, Haverford College: Galactic Science with LSST (15 mins)

Dr. Phil Marshall, KIPAC-Stanford University: Extragalactic Science with LSST (15 mins)

Dr. Lucianne Walkowicz, UC Berkeley: Transient Science with LSST (15 mins)

Dr. R. Lynne Jones: University of Washington: LSST Resources for the Community (20 mins)
    with panel including Josh Bloom, K-T Lim, and Kirk Borne

Financial support for LSST comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Cooperative Agreement No. 1258333, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and private funding raised by the LSST Corporation. The NSF-funded LSST Project Office for construction was established as an operating center under management of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).  The DOE-funded effort to build the LSST camera is managed by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC).
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 to promote the progress of science. NSF supports basic research and people to create knowledge that transforms the future.   

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