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Published December 2016 | public
Journal Article

Skysurveys, Light Curves and Statistical Challenges


Research in astronomy is undergoing a profound transformation from the study of small samples to the analysis of large-scale digital surveys of the sky. Ever larger amounts of data and better statistical techniques are being used to address a vast range of astronomical problems, from near-by asteroids to universe-wide cosmology. There is a huge need for new methodology development to address petabyte-sized datasets of images, atlases with millions of spectra, multivariate catalogues and time series with billions of objects. The focus of this article is on the analysis of light-curves (i.e. the variation of source brightness as a function of time). A description of the importance of the problem and the techniques already being used is given. The field is ripe with many statistical and computational challenges.

Additional Information

© 2015 The Authors. International Statistical Review © 2015 International Statistical Institute. Issue online: 11 November 2016; Version of record online: 29 September 2015; Manuscript Accepted: 17 August 2015; Manuscript Revised: 30 June 2015; Manuscript Received: 19 September 2014. Funded by: NSF Grant Numbers: AST-1047586, AST-0909182, AST-1313422, IIS-1118041, 1066293

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