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Simulations of Strongly Gravitational Lensing of Galaxies For Use in Data Challenge 2 of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope Dark Energy Science Collaboration

Published onJun 01, 2020
Simulations of Strongly Gravitational Lensing of Galaxies For Use in Data Challenge 2 of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope Dark Energy Science Collaboration

I will describe a project creating simulations of gravitationally lensed galaxies in collaboration with the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) Dark Energy Science Collaboration (DESC). A gravitational lens creates a distorted image of a farther off object as light travels through space that is bent around a nearer massive body. This distortion appears as a ring, arc or multiple images around the image of the lensing body. The simulations are being generated in order to be used in Data Challenge 2 (DC2) of the LSST-DESC. DC2 involves the production, validation and analysis of a 5000 sq-deg mock catalog and a 300 sq-deg end-to-end simulation of mock image simulation and image processing. This project is specifically working to produce several thousand simulated images of strongly lensed galaxies using the Flexible Image Transport System (FITS) file type commonly used in astronomical data storage. Utilizing the Photon Simulator (PhoSim) software, the generated FITS stamps will be put into large-scale cosmological simulations. These FITS stamps will be part of a simulated images catalog used to test other software and scientific algorithms. Part of my work was in testing and running the code used to generate the FITS stamps and create full-system images for data quality checks. As part of this project I will display the resultant images on a website hosted by Github.

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