Analysis of Data

Patterns of Sunlight on Extra-Solar Planets

exoplanet and red starExoplanets discovered to date show a wide range of orbital eccentricities; the angles between their spin equators and orbital planes are still quite unknown, but these "obliquities'' may range widely as well. Both eccentricity and obliquity can have profound effects on a planet's seasons, as well as on its cycle of night and day.

Mapping Io’s Surface Topography Using Stereo Images and Photoclinometry

saturn transitNo instrumentation specifically designed to measure the topography of a planetary surface has ever been deployed to Jupiter’s moon Io, the most volcanically active body in the Solar System.  Available mapping techniques that exist to perform such a task in the absence of the relevant instrumentation include stereo and photoclinometry (shape-from-shading) processing of available Voyager and Galil

Exploring Complex, High-Dimensional Data For Hidden Structure

quantum physicsHow does one search for a needle in a multi-dimensional haystack not knowing what a needle is and not being sure there is one in the haystack?  Solving this sort of problem might seem to be impossible, yet this is exactly what Dynamic Quantum Clustering (DQC) manages to do.

Robots, Embodiment, and Mediated Virtuality

polar mRobots and other embodied systems can be seen as mediators between the real and the virtual, influencing our expectations of the possibilities and limitations of virtual worlds. In some cases, technologies designed specifically for virtual interactivity have spilled over into our exchanges with other places not normally considered "virtual": distant (but real) places, nano-scale phenomena, and even our own cultural history.

A new perspective on the driver of space weather: the Sun's corona as a globally coupled system

sun's coronaThe Sun's dynamic magnetic field is the origin of all of the variability in the heliosphere and in geospace that we refer to as space weather. This variability occurs on a hierarchy of time scales ranging from the full 11-year solar cycle that determines the Sun's global dipole field down to less than the few hours on which a large solar flare or coronal mass ejection occurs.

What can black hole dynamics tell us about Quantum Gravity?

Forty years ago, Jacob Bekenstein and Stephen Hawking showed that black holes are "hot," with characteristic temperatures and entropies that depend on properties of their event horizons.  The Hawking temperature and the Bekenstein-Hawking entropy are quantum and gravitational -- they depend on both Planck's constant and Newton's gravitational constant -- and, in fact, they provide one of the very few pieces of information about quantum gravity that we really beli

Brown Dwarfs, Planetary Mass Objects, and their Disks in the Nearest Star-Forming Regions

Objects with masses (<0.08 solar masses) too small to sustain hydrogen fusion were theorized to exist five decades ago, and discovered 30 years later, due to their extreme faintness. Even less massive (<13 Jupiter or <0.01 solar masses) are the planetary mass objects (PMOs, so-called because they are not orbiting a star.

Using the topography of icy satellites to understand their internal structure and thermal history

The icy moons of Saturn boast a wide variety of topographic features, including the deep Herschel crater on Mimas, the prominent equatorial ridge on Iapetus and the famous “tiger stripes” of Enceladus. The lesser known moons, Rhea and Dione also display complex topography, including impact basins, normal faults and ridges. The rich diversity of surface features on these moons is in part due to differences in their thermal histories.

Machine Learning for Exploring Data Streams: Lessons from the VLBA

Next-generation science instruments such as the SKA, LSST, and terrestrial sensor networks will dramatically increase the volume of collected data.  This enables detection of very rare transient anomalies, but also creates new challenges since comprehensive storage is impossible and analysis must occur in real time.

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