AAS Meeting #193 - Austin, Texas, January 1999
Session 13. Data Discovery Tools and Services
Display, Wednesday, January 6, 1999, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall 1

[Previous] | [Session 13] | [Next]

[13.02] The Digital Sky Project: Creating a Multi-Wavelength Virtual Observatory

R. J. Brunner, T. Prince, S. G. Djorgovski (Caltech), J. C. Good, T. H. Handley (IPAC), S. C. Odewahn, R. R. Gal (Caltech)

A new era in Astronomy is beginning as multiple, large area, digital sky surveys are entering production. The resulting datasets are truly remarkable in their own right; however, a revolutionary step arises in the aggregation of complimentary multi-wavelength surveys (i.e. the cross-identification of a billion sources). New tools and new techniques will be required in order to capitalize on the vast amount of data that will soon be just a few clicks away from anyone in the world. The Digital Sky Project was initiated in an effort to simplify this transition and is actively working to develop the techniques and technologies necessary to solve the problems inherent in federating these large databases, as well as the mining of the resultant aggregate data. The two initial tenants of the ``Digital Sky'' are the 2MASS (2 Micron All Sky Survey) and DPOSS (Digitized Palomar Observatory Sky Survey) projects.

As an NPACI (National Partnership for Advanced Computational Infrastructure) project, we are looking into the role advanced hardware technologies can play in the creation of a ``Digital Sky'', including parallelizing both the retrieval and computational requirements, as well as methods to improve the response between the distributed system components. In order to be successful, this project must be able to grow through the incorporation of new surveys and datasets in addition to its original tenants. As a result, we are identifying key issues for community standardization which will not only simplify the eventual creation of a global multi-wavelength virtual observatory, but also reduce the burden of developing and maintaining a large astronomical archive.

[Previous] | [Session 13] | [Next]