First Einstein@Home Newsletter

Dear Einstein@Home volunteers,

February 19th was the tenth anniversary of the Einstein@Home launch. A lot has happened in the past decade, and thanks to your support, the project has become one of the largest distributed volunteer projects on the planet. Thank you for helping Einstein@Home to do great science!

We would like to begin Einstein@Home's anniversary year by launching the Einstein@Home newsletter. Four times a year, project scientists and developers will tell you about our exciting science. In each newsletter, a handful of Einstein@Home team members will report on what they have been up to, and what their plans for the future are.

Our first newsletter features updates from Bernd Machenschalk on how the project operates, and from M. Alessandra Papa on Einstein@Home's latest and most sensitive gravitational-wave hunt. Benjamin Knispel brings you up to speed with the search for binary radio pulsars and Holger Pletsch has news on the Fermi gamma-ray pulsar analysis. Enjoy!

Posted on behalf of Bruce Allen, Director, Einstein@Home

Comments

xmal
xmal
Joined: 22 Jan 05
Posts: 2
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RAC: 1

First Einstein@Home Newsletter

Thanx a lot! It's an excellent idea and an brillant realisation!
I'm already waiting for the next one! ;-)

MAGIC Quantum Mechanic
MAGIC Quantum M...
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Just got mine when I checked

Just got mine when I checked my email!

Benjamin Knispel
Benjamin Knispel
Joined: 1 Jun 06
Posts: 124
Credit: 4974142
RAC: 0

Here is the complete

Here is the complete newsletter for all of you who cannot wait for the email to arrive :-)

News on the gravitational-wave search (M. Alessandra Papa)
----------------------------------------------------------
The Einstein@Home all-sky search for continuous gravitational-wave signals in LIGO data, in the frequency range of 50 to 450 Hz, has given us over 16 million candidates to follow-up in LIGO S6 data. A first stage follow-up is currently running on Einstein@Home and should end soon. We have already lined up the next step: a second-stage follow-up of the most promising (some millions) of these candidates. This second stage inspects the candidates much more closely, and reduces the uncertainty in the signal parameters by about 90%. This second follow-up digs deeper into the detector noise, and will significantly increase the sensitivity of our search. This is very exciting because it is the first large scale deep follow-up we have ever performed!

In addition to these all-sky searches, Einstein@Home is also searching for continuous gravitational waves from specific targets in the sky. For the next stage of this, studies are ongoing to determine the optimal search set-up, the most promising target astrophysical objects, and the appropriate frequency and frequency-derivative search ranges. The next Einstein@Home targeted-search runs will be based on the results on these studies.

News on the binary radio pulsar search (Benjamin Knispel)
---------------------------------------------------------
Einstein@Home is currently analyzing data from two different radio telescopes. The BRP4 run is searching data taken very recently with the Arecibo radio telescope as part of the PALFA survey. This is an ongoing survey: once we catch up with the backlog of observational data, the search is paused, and resumes when new data arrives. The BRP5 run that was analyzing data from the Parkes radio telescope, taken in the so-called "Perseus Arm surveyâ€, has recently finished. So far, we have identified several weak candidates, but sadly, attempts to re-observe them with the Parkes radio telescope revealed that they were all false alarms.

The latest binary radio pulsar search, called BRP6, is a further analysis of archival observations from the Parkes Telescope, from the very successful Parkes Multi-beam Pulsar Survey (PMPS). Previous Einstein@Home analysis of this data searched for pulsar spinning up to 130 rotations per second, and led to the discovery of 24 new pulsars (http://arxiv.org/abs/1302.0467). This new analysis, based on improvements in the Einstein@Home GPU apps, will go up to 300 Hz. This is interesting territory: fast-spinning pulsars in short-orbital-period binaries are extremely exciting astronomical objects, which enable precise tests of general relativity with them and studies of stellar evolution and the pulsar population in our Galaxy. We feel sure that more treasures remain to be uncovered!

News on the gamma-ray pulsar search (Holger Pletsch)
----------------------------------------------------

Recently, we developed advanced methods (http://arxiv.org/abs/1408.6962) to improve the sensitivity of blind searches for unknown gamma-ray pulsars in data from the Large Area Telescope on board NASA's Fermi Satellite, which was launched in 2008. These techniques boost the sensitivity significantly: we can now detect gamma-ray pulsars that are 50% fainter than before, without increasing the computational cost! Our latest Einstein@Home run, FGRP4, makes use of these improvements to conduct a new blind survey of unidentified, pulsar-like Fermi sources.

The combination of improved methods, with the extra sensitivity of the latest Fermi data, makes us optimistic that we will make new discoveries. In fact we have already identified a large number of highly significant pulsar candidates and are currently carefully studying them.

News from the project administration (Bernd Machenschalk)
---------------------------------------------------------

We had a busy time around the end of last year! The locality scheduling for the new gravitational-wave analysis turned out to require much more attention than expected. We were very busy moving data around and improving the locality scheduler - and still are. Before the holidays we tried to get the entire project in a shape where it could survive without us -- we wanted to be with our families and friends and not busy keeping the project running. But it turned out that we had underestimated the progress that Einstein@Home would make: we got an unexpected boost of computing power over the holidays, and ran out of "work"! Fortunately this was easily fixed.

More importantly, there was to a bug in our server monitoring, which resulted in one of the Einstein@Home servers filling up without any warning. The affected server holds the uploaded result files from all Einstein@Home clients. Its file system was filled to the brim, which had severe consequences for the project. It took about a week to get the project running again smoothly. This was the first unplanned long downtime of Einstein@Home for quite a number of years. We did use the downtime for some improvements, which mean that the server is now working better than ever before!

Finally, some security issues turned up (the widely discussed gethostbyname() or "GHOST" problem) that needed urgent attention, and required updating and rebooting about 20 project servers.

Thank you for your continued support,
Bruce Allen, Benjamin Knispel, Bernd Machenschalk, M. Alessandra Papa, and Holger Pletsch
for the Einstein@Home team

 

Einstein@Home Project

poppageek
poppageek
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Very nice. Thank you!

Very nice. Thank you!

Maximilian Mieth
Maximilian Mieth
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Thanks! I know it's extra

Thanks! I know it's extra effort, but it is much appreciated!

Sascha Becker
Sascha Becker
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Posts: 1
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Very nice. Thank you!

Very nice. Thank you!

FlyboyRon
FlyboyRon
Joined: 26 Jun 06
Posts: 1
Credit: 3070246
RAC: 3874

Great update! Thanks! It's

Great update! Thanks!
It's always good to have some feedback as to where all our CPU and GPU cycles are going. I know it takes time and effort, but to us, it's very worthwhile.
Great to hear there's positive progress!

paris
paris
Joined: 11 Jan 06
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RAC: 260

Just got mine this morning.

Just got mine this morning. Thank you. Very informative and an enjoyable read.


Plus SETI Classic = 21,082 WUs

Luxorion
Luxorion
Joined: 16 Oct 06
Posts: 18
Credit: 32739581
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Hi all, This newsletter is

Hi all,

This newsletter is an excellent idea.
Just received my copy.

Thanks !

Michael Polla
Michael Polla
Joined: 12 Jun 07
Posts: 1
Credit: 14978110
RAC: 3

Thank you, it's a very good

Thank you, it's a very good idea. This newsletter is very instructive !
Greetings from Switzterland :-)

Jeroen
Jeroen
Joined: 25 Nov 05
Posts: 379
Credit: 737525872
RAC: 0

I received the newsletter

I received the newsletter today. Thank you for putting this together. The newsletter is very informative on the status of each of the projects.

Jeroen

Trotador
Trotador
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Credit: 359956323
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I've just received it. Thanks

I've just received it. Thanks a lot, easy to read and lot of information.

aD
aD
Joined: 3 Mar 14
Posts: 1
Credit: 62557
RAC: 234

Thank you for a newsletter

Thank you for a newsletter which managed to combine wholesome and interesting information with readability for the layman (speaking for myself :-)

Skynet
Skynet
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Credit: 4905444
RAC: 4939

The newsletter was very

The newsletter was very interesting and I'm glad to get a peek under the hood.

Mark_Bryson
Mark_Bryson
Joined: 21 Feb 13
Posts: 1
Credit: 655238
RAC: 0

Thanks for the newsletter,

Thanks for the newsletter, the time and effort is much appreciated. Your dedication to the project is appreciated as well. Thank you again!
I am already looking forward to the next newsletter.

Greetings and best wishes to all from Mark in Fresno, CA

David Tussey
David Tussey
Joined: 11 Jul 14
Posts: 1
Credit: 7406152
RAC: 5

Not being too much of a

Not being too much of a physicist, it would be nice to know more of the "why" for these experiments; a brief explanation of the phenomena and the search objective.

Why are we searching for continuous gravitational-wave signals in LIGO data? And what would it mean if we find it? What the heck even is a continuous gravitational-wave signal and why would finding that be meaningful?

Same with the binary radio pulsar and gamma-ray pulsar searches.

Finally, are there any recommendations you might have that would potentially make our contributions more useful and valuable...or even plentiful? For example, running a screensaver for BOINC, installing it on mobile phones, control settings that you might recommend

Definitely appreciate the newsletter. Always good to have some feedback on our contributions. Am sure this was a lot of work, and it is appreciated. Thank you.

poppageek
poppageek
Joined: 13 Aug 10
Posts: 217
Credit: 519319192
RAC: 1851558

Not to take away from anyones

Not to take away from anyones efforts here but to add to them, I have found these videos very helpful in trying to understand gravity waves, pulsars and other related topics.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCUiEnhomWoqL5K1zQNs5t4Q?&ab_channel=PhysicistMichael

Cheers!

Filipe
Filipe
Joined: 10 Mar 05
Posts: 141
Credit: 162360420
RAC: 308479

RE: Four times a year,

Quote:
Four times a year, project scientists and developers will tell you about our exciting science. In each newsletter, a handful of Einstein@Home team members will report on what they have been up to, and what their plans for the future are.

It has been a few months seen the last newsletter . Is there another one coming?

Quote:

News on the gravitational-wave search (M. Alessandra Papa)
----------------------------------------------------------
The Einstein@Home all-sky search for continuous gravitational-wave signals in LIGO data, in the frequency range of 50 to 450 Hz, has given us over 16 million candidates to follow-up in LIGO S6 data. A first stage follow-up is currently running on Einstein@Home and should end soon. We have already lined up the next step: a second-stage follow-up of the most promising (some millions) of these candidates. This second stage inspects the candidates much more closely, and reduces the uncertainty in the signal parameters by about 90%. This second follow-up digs deeper into the detector noise, and will significantly increase the sensitivity of our search. This is very exciting because it is the first large scale deep follow-up we have ever performed!

In addition to these all-sky searches, Einstein@Home is also searching for continuous gravitational waves from specific targets in the sky. For the next stage of this, studies are ongoing to determine the optimal search set-up, the most promising target astrophysical objects, and the appropriate frequency and frequency-derivative search ranges. The next Einstein@Home targeted-search runs will be based on the results on these studies.

What is coming after the current S6 run who is nearing the end? Can you explain? Are we having another more detailed search? or are you issuing a paper with the results of the most promissing candidades?

Bernd Machenschalk
Bernd Machenschalk
Joined: 15 Oct 04
Posts: 3739
Credit: 157791896
RAC: 58645

The second Einstein@Home

The second Einstein@Home newsletter is currently being prepared. The goal was to send it out by the end of the month, but it might get delayed a few days. It should answer the questions you asked.

BM

BM

merle van osdol
merle van osdol
Joined: 1 Mar 05
Posts: 512
Credit: 60724446
RAC: 0

Thanks just read this - great

Thanks just read this - great job. I've been gone for many months. Now with the cooler months coming I will be around 'til at least Mar. 1,

Quote:

Here is the complete newsletter for all of you who cannot wait for the email to arrive :-)

News on the gravitational-wave search (M. Alessandra Papa)
----------------------------------------------------------
The Einstein@Home all-sky search for continuous gravitational-wave signals in LIGO data, in the frequency range of 50 to 450 Hz, has given us over 16 million candidates to follow-up in LIGO S6 data. A first stage follow-up is currently running on Einstein@Home and should end soon. We have already lined up the next step: a second-stage follow-up of the most promising (some millions) of these candidates. This second stage inspects the candidates much more closely, and reduces the uncertainty in the signal parameters by about 90%. This second follow-up digs deeper into the detector noise, and will significantly increase the sensitivity of our search. This is very exciting because it is the first large scale deep follow-up we have ever performed!

In addition to these all-sky searches, Einstein@Home is also searching for continuous gravitational waves from specific targets in the sky. For the next stage of this, studies are ongoing to determine the optimal search set-up, the most promising target astrophysical objects, and the appropriate frequency and frequency-derivative search ranges. The next Einstein@Home targeted-search runs will be based on the results on these studies.

News on the binary radio pulsar search (Benjamin Knispel)
---------------------------------------------------------
Einstein@Home is currently analyzing data from two different radio telescopes. The BRP4 run is searching data taken very recently with the Arecibo radio telescope as part of the PALFA survey. This is an ongoing survey: once we catch up with the backlog of observational data, the search is paused, and resumes when new data arrives. The BRP5 run that was analyzing data from the Parkes radio telescope, taken in the so-called "Perseus Arm surveyâ€, has recently finished. So far, we have identified several weak candidates, but sadly, attempts to re-observe them with the Parkes radio telescope revealed that they were all false alarms.

The latest binary radio pulsar search, called BRP6, is a further analysis of archival observations from the Parkes Telescope, from the very successful Parkes Multi-beam Pulsar Survey (PMPS). Previous Einstein@Home analysis of this data searched for pulsar spinning up to 130 rotations per second, and led to the discovery of 24 new pulsars (http://arxiv.org/abs/1302.0467). This new analysis, based on improvements in the Einstein@Home GPU apps, will go up to 300 Hz. This is interesting territory: fast-spinning pulsars in short-orbital-period binaries are extremely exciting astronomical objects, which enable precise tests of general relativity with them and studies of stellar evolution and the pulsar population in our Galaxy. We feel sure that more treasures remain to be uncovered!

News on the gamma-ray pulsar search (Holger Pletsch)
----------------------------------------------------

Recently, we developed advanced methods (http://arxiv.org/abs/1408.6962) to improve the sensitivity of blind searches for unknown gamma-ray pulsars in data from the Large Area Telescope on board NASA's Fermi Satellite, which was launched in 2008. These techniques boost the sensitivity significantly: we can now detect gamma-ray pulsars that are 50% fainter than before, without increasing the computational cost! Our latest Einstein@Home run, FGRP4, makes use of these improvements to conduct a new blind survey of unidentified, pulsar-like Fermi sources.

The combination of improved methods, with the extra sensitivity of the latest Fermi data, makes us optimistic that we will make new discoveries. In fact we have already identified a large number of highly significant pulsar candidates and are currently carefully studying them.

News from the project administration (Bernd Machenschalk)
---------------------------------------------------------

We had a busy time around the end of last year! The locality scheduling for the new gravitational-wave analysis turned out to require much more attention than expected. We were very busy moving data around and improving the locality scheduler - and still are. Before the holidays we tried to get the entire project in a shape where it could survive without us -- we wanted to be with our families and friends and not busy keeping the project running. But it turned out that we had underestimated the progress that Einstein@Home would make: we got an unexpected boost of computing power over the holidays, and ran out of "work"! Fortunately this was easily fixed.

More importantly, there was to a bug in our server monitoring, which resulted in one of the Einstein@Home servers filling up without any warning. The affected server holds the uploaded result files from all Einstein@Home clients. Its file system was filled to the brim, which had severe consequences for the project. It took about a week to get the project running again smoothly. This was the first unplanned long downtime of Einstein@Home for quite a number of years. We did use the downtime for some improvements, which mean that the server is now working better than ever before!

Finally, some security issues turned up (the widely discussed gethostbyname() or "GHOST" problem) that needed urgent attention, and required updating and rebooting about 20 project servers.

Thank you for your continued support,
Bruce Allen, Benjamin Knispel, Bernd Machenschalk, M. Alessandra Papa, and Holger Pletsch
for the Einstein@Home team


merle

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