Press Release: Computers Beat Brainpower In Counting Stars
A team of University of Sydney astronomers has developed a new way to automatically classify huge numbers of astronomical objects, and to discover new, exotic ones almost as soon as they happen.
Massive torrents of raw data are now collected by telescopes on a daily basis creating an urgent need to massively accelerate the reliable classification of millions of stars and galaxies, and to quickly highlight objects that might be new discoveries or that have unusual properties.
“Next generation telescopes like the Square Kilometre Array will produce enough raw data to fill up 15 million iPods every day,” said Kitty Lo, lead author of the research published in The Astrophysical Journal.
“It will be too much for humans to sift through, and this is where computer classification comes in,” said Ms Lo.