Linux.conf.au 2014 – Day 2 – Session 3 – Astronomy Miniconf

Supercomputing and Data Storage Design for the SKA – Stephen Ord

  • Still in design process but not everything finalised
  • Square Kilometre Array
    • Dense core, spread out arms
    • Across Aus and South Africa
    • different antenna cover different frequencies
    • Main goals of array:
      • Galaxy Evolution, Cosmology and Dark energy
      • The first billion years of the Universe
      • Strong field tests of gravity using pulsars and black holes
      • Cosmic Magnetism
      • Cradle of life – complex molecules around distant stars
  • Interferometer – Very heavy proccessing required
  • Lots of data coming in, lots to be archived
  • MWA ( approx 1% of the size of the SKA)
    • 7km of trenching
    • 10kn of electrical cable
    • 16km of fibre
    • 2048 dual pole antennas
    • 42 km of coax cable
  • Way too dense information for me to summarise
  • Next Generation Archiving System
    • Distrubuted, forwards data to various clusters around the world
    • Users can subscribe to tags
 

Desert Fireball Network – with Linux under the bonnet – Martin Cupák

  • Meteoroid (in space), Meteor (in atmosphere) , Meteorite (on earth)
    • Observed from 2 or more locations. 120-30km above surface. Freefall below 30-40km
    • Triangulation, analysis, weather model (can move up to 10km sidewise)
    • Search trip
    • Meteorite!
  • Types: Stoney, Achondrite, stony-Iron, Iron
  • History
    • Manually operated film cameras (since 1959)
    • Automated film cameras (first in 1997, since 2001)
    • Digital cameras (ideas and dev since 2010, operation since 2013)
  • First Meteorite observed, triangulated and found in Czech republic in April 1959
  • Since 2009 15 automated film cameras across 13 stations in Europe
  • Nullarbor network of automated film cameras – 3 stations 2005, 4 stations since 2007
    • 150km apart
  • Based on Industrial PC
    • Old ones P1 , newer P3
    • Microphone picks up sound from meteor going through atmosphere
  • Software
    • Using Redhat 7.3 (released 2002)
    • ntpd sync’d
    • New System using Centos 5.2
  • Digital Cameras
    • Triggered system
      • sequence of hi-speed HR images fired when event detected
      • 11 images/second
      • Complicated design so put aside for now
    • Long exposure system
      • MK-I – 2 built as testbed
        • eBox Pc, 933Mhz, 3xUSB, 1TB HDD, DSLR taking 30s exposures, leo stick uController for power, GPS and camera control, 3G modem, 2x2TB NAS
        • 3G modem lockups
        • Slow CPU
        • SD card unrelaible
        • External HDD a worry
      • MK-II – 10 built, 5 deployed, 60 planned across Australia + USA
        • Industrial PC
        • Video Camera
        • Atom N2600 dual core 1.6GHz
        • 480G SSD
        • 2 X 4TB external HDs
    • Kit camera system for enthusiasts
      • Similar to long-exposure system, possibly lower resolution
  • Goal 60 Cameras, cover 1/3 of Australia. See 15-20 meteorites / year in searchable areas, 500TB data per year
  • Data available for other uses?