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Northwestern University

Gravity Spy Project
  • Gravity Spy is an NSF-funded interdisciplinary project incorporating citizen science, machine learning, social science, and aLIGO detector characterization
  • One major issue afflicting aLIGO’s ability to detect gravitational waves is poorly-modeled noise known as “glitches”
  • Gravity Spy will aid in the classification and characterization of glitches by combining human intuition and pattern recognition with the power of computers to process large amounts of data systematically
  • Zooniverse Project volunteers will morphologically classify glitches from the LIGO data stream, which are used to train machine learning algorithms for further classification
  • In addition to the characterization and elimination of problematic noise in the aLIGO data stream, Gravity Spy promotes gravitational wave science and involves the lay public in scientific progress

           Vicky Kalogera, Northwestern University
           Kevin Crowston, Syracuse University
           Shane Larson, Northwestern University, Adler Planetarium
           Josh Smith, California State University - Fullerton
           Laura Trouille, Adler Planetarium, Zooniverse

Northwestern University
           Sara Bahaadini
           Emre Besler
           Scotty Coughlin
           Vicky Kalogera
           Aggelos Katsaggelos
           Shane Larson
           Avery Miller
           Brandon Miller
           Ben Nelson
           Neda Rohani
           Laura Sampson
           Mike Zevin

Adler Planetarium

           Shane Larson
           Laura Trouille
California State University - Fullerton
           Josh Smith
Syracuse University

           Kevin Crowston
           Mabi Harandi
           Corey Jackson
           Carsten Osterlund
University of Alabama at Huntsville
Center for Space Plasma and Aeronomic Research

           Tyson Littenberg
           Sarah Allen
           Laura Trouille

Media Round Up

This image shows a particular kind of glitch common in LIGO data called a "whistle." In this case, the origin of the glitch is known to be part of the electronic control systems. Features like this in the data can fool astrophysics search codes. The Gravity Spy project will help discover and classify glitches, and help make our computer search algorithms more adept at recognizing them in the data.