BigSkyEarth Conference: AstroGeoInformatics

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The Meeting Room on the Guajara campus of the University of La Laguna, Tenerife, will host the lectures of BigSkyEarth “AstroGeoInformatics-Knowledge Discovery in Biag Data from Astronomy and Earth Observation” in these lectures a number of subjects related to Big Data in Science will he discussed, with the prime aim of developing or improving the tools which can simplify and speed up the work of research and observation, in astronomy and earth science, which is carried out at the IAC and the Canary Island Observatories.

At the present time systems for astronomical and terrestrial observation both use informatics, and in particular analyse the huge mass of data underlying their research. With the rise of Terabyte (TB) cuantities, the volumen of data is growing continuously. Seeking, analyzing, comparing and visualising the data obtained from observations are tasks which offer increasing obstacles and complications, which get in the way of their own analysis. This is the field of action BIG SKY EARTH, whose aim is to push forward and improve communication within these disciplines and also between them by identifying and collecting common solutions in the areas of industry and research.

 “The Instituto de Astrofísica de Canarias is leading many Big Data projects and has contributed significantly to the development of new methods of processing an analysing data from surveys, such as the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS)” says Olga Zamora, a researcher at the IAC, and one of the organizers of the conference. She adds “In particular in the APOGEE survey (a survey of the stars in the Milky Way), the IAC team has worked intensively to obtain maps of chemical abundances, which has entailed obtaining information from hundreds of thousands of stars”

In the conference sessions they will tackle the aims of the BigSkyEarth action to improve and develop tools which will allow us to implement the new capacities for interpeting Big Data to try to solve the problems of the accumulation of data, and to overcome the challenges involved in improving the relations between observations and informatics. “The interest shown in this conference by so many experts in the science of Big Data throughout Europe is in complete agreement with the planning at the IAC, where we are preparing for the arrival of large quantities of data which will be coming from the new telescopes which will soon aabe uin use” says Johan Knapen, a researcher at the IAC and another of the organizers of the conference.

Dejan Vinkovic (Science and Society Synergy Institute / Hipersfera Ltd. Croatia), IP from COST, said: "It is a pleasure to see that our project facilitated collaborations between people from two communities that traditionally do not communicate a lot: astronomy and Earth observations. The conference is the finale of our successful 4 year project funded by the EU's COST framework and now we will define future plans for keeping this networking active."

This even, which will take place between 17th and 19th December, will be inaugurated by Rafael Rebolo, director of the IAC, and recent winner of the National Prize for Research in Physical Science, Material Science, and Earth Science. After that there will be a series of lectures and scientific poster sessions. For the remaining dayus the same pattern will be followed, except for two notable events. On Tuesday there will be a visito the Teide Observatory, and on Wednesday at 16.00 hours local time there will be an open session to discuss various subjects related to the future of BigEarthSky.

Interesting links:

BigSkyEarth website

Tenerife Conference: BigSkyEarth