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  1. Low surface brightness galaxies (LSBGs), galaxies that are fainter than the dark night sky, are famously difficult to detect. Nonetheless, studies of these galaxies are essential to improve our understanding of the formation and evolution of low-mass galaxies. In this work, we train a deep learning model using the Mask R-CNN framework on a set of simulated LSBGs inserted into images from the Dark Energy Survey (DES) Data Release 2 (DR2). This deep learning model is combined with several conventional image pre-processing steps to develop a pipeline for the detection of LSBGs. We apply this pipeline to the full DES DR2 coadd image dataset, and preliminary results show the detection of 22 large, high-quality LSBG candidates that went undetected by conventional algorithms. Furthermore, we find that the performance of our algorithm is greatly improved by including examples of false positives as an additional class during training.
  2. Wide-field astronomical surveys are often affected by the presence of undesirable reflections (often known as “ghosting artifacts” or “ghosts”) and scattered-light artifacts. The identification and mitigation of these artifacts is important for rigorous astronomical analyses of faint and low-surface-brightness systems. In this work, we use images from the Dark Energy Survey (DES) to train, validate, and test a deep neural network (Mask R-CNN) to detect and localize ghosts and scatteredlight artifacts. We find that the ability of the Mask R-CNN model to identify affected regions is superior to that of conventional algorithms that model the physical processes that lead to such artifacts, thus providing a powerful technique for the automated detection of ghosting and scattered-light artifacts in current and near-future surveys.
  3. Schwartz, Russell (Ed.)
  4. Software is a critical part of modern research, and yet there are insufficient mechanisms in the scholarly ecosystem to acknowledge, cite, and measure the impact of research software. The majority of academic fields rely on a one-dimensional credit model whereby academic articles (and their associated citations) are the dominant factor in the success of a researcher's career. In the petabyte era of astronomical science, citing software and measuring its impact enables academia to retain and reward researchers that make significant software contributions. These highly skilled researchers must be retained to maximize the scientific return from petabyte-scale datasets. Evolving beyond the one-dimensional credit model requires overcoming several key challenges, including the current scholarly ecosystem and scientific culture issues. This white paper will present these challenges and suggest practical solutions for elevating the role of software as a product of the research enterprise.
  5. Abstract CMB-S4—the next-generation ground-based cosmic microwave background (CMB) experiment—is set to significantly advance the sensitivity of CMB measurements and enhance our understanding of the origin and evolution of the universe. Among the science cases pursued with CMB-S4, the quest for detecting primordial gravitational waves is a central driver of the experimental design. This work details the development of a forecasting framework that includes a power-spectrum-based semianalytic projection tool, targeted explicitly toward optimizing constraints on the tensor-to-scalar ratio, r , in the presence of Galactic foregrounds and gravitational lensing of the CMB. This framework is unique in its direct use of information from the achieved performance of current Stage 2–3 CMB experiments to robustly forecast the science reach of upcoming CMB-polarization endeavors. The methodology allows for rapid iteration over experimental configurations and offers a flexible way to optimize the design of future experiments, given a desired scientific goal. To form a closed-loop process, we couple this semianalytic tool with map-based validation studies, which allow for the injection of additional complexity and verification of our forecasts with several independent analysis methods. We document multiple rounds of forecasts for CMB-S4 using this process and the resulting establishment of the current reference design ofmore »the primordial gravitational-wave component of the Stage-4 experiment, optimized to achieve our science goals of detecting primordial gravitational waves for r > 0.003 at greater than 5 σ , or in the absence of a detection, of reaching an upper limit of r < 0.001 at 95% CL.« less