The VVV Templates Project - Towards an Automated Classification of VVV Light-curves. I. Building a Database of Stellar Variability in the Near-infrared

Friday, 08 August 2014 9 a.m. — 10 a.m. MST

AURA Lecture Hall

NOIRLab South Colloquia
RODOLFO ANGELONI (P:ost-doctoral Fellow, Instituto de Astrofisica & Centro de Astro-Ingenieria de la Universidad Catolica de Chile and Gemini South Visiting Astronomer)

The Vista Variables in the Vía Láctea (VVV) ESO Public Survey is a variability survey of the Milky Way bulge and an adjacent section of the disk carried out from 2010 on ESO Visible and Infrared Survey Telescope for Astronomy (VISTA). The VVV survey will eventually deliver a deep near-IR atlas with photometry and positions in five passbands (ZYJHKS) and a catalogue of 1−10 million variable point sources – mostly unknown – that require classifications. 

In this talk I will introduce the VVV Templates Project, whose main goal is to develop and test the machine-learning algorithms for the automated classification of the VVV light-curves. As VVV is the first massive, multi-epoch survey of stellar variability in the near-IR, the template light-curves that are required for training the classification algorithms are not available. I will thus describe the construction of a comprehensive database of infrared stellar variability. This database will be finally used as a training-set for the machine-learning algorithms that will automatically classify the light-curves produced by VVV.