Creating High Quality All-Sky Visualizations of Astronomy Image Data Sets: HiPS and Montage

29 Jan 2020  ·  Berriman G. Bruce, Good John C., Desai Vandana, Groom Steven L. ·

We describe a case study to use the Montage image mosaic engine to create maps of the ALLWISE image data set in the Hierarchical Progressive Survey (HiPS) sky-tesselation scheme. Our approach demonstrates that Montage reveals the science content of infrared images in greater detail than has hitherto been possible in HiPS maps... The approach exploits two unique (to our knowledge) characteristics of the Montage image mosaic engine: background modeling to rectify the time variable image backgrounds to common levels; and an adaptive image stretch to present images for visualization. The creation of the maps is supported by the development of four new tools that when fully tested will become part of the Montage distribution. The compute intensive part of the processing lies in the reprojection of the images, and we show how we optimized the processing for efficient creation of mosaics that are used in turn to create maps in the HiPS tiling scheme. We plan to apply our methodology to infrared image data sets such a those delivered by Spitzer, 2MASS, IRAS and Planck. read more

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Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics