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3D visualization and analysis of HI in and around galaxies

PhD ceremony:Mr D. Punzo
When:May 26, 2017
Supervisors:prof. dr. J.M. (Thijs) van der Hulst, prof. dr. J.B.T.M. (Jos) Roerdink
Where:Academy building RUG
Faculty:Science and Engineering
3D visualization and analysis of HI in and around galaxies

Upcoming neutral hydrogen (HI) surveys will provide a wealth of data regarding thegas content in hundreds of thousands of galaxies. Part of these surveys will be performed with Apertif, a new system on the Westerbork Synthesis Radio Telescope in Drenthe, which will increase the field of view with a factor twentyso that the telescope can observe large areas of sky much faster.These surveys will provide an unprecedented amount of data, which can be used to search for faint signatures of HI falling into (and escaping from) galaxies.Studying these signatures is crucial for a better understandingof the life cycle of galaxies.The HI emission of these signatures is, however, often very faint, with subtle structureand therefore difficult to find and interpret.

Efficiently identifying them with automated software is therefore difficult,even when using the full 3D information of the data consisting of the spatial (in two dimensions) and the radial velocity (the third dimension) structure.We have investigated state-of-the-art techniques for interactive 3D visualization, 3D filtering and 3D selection to enhance the inspection and analysis, in terms of both efficiency and quality, of complex sources with faint and subtle gas (HI) components.

We have developed SlicerAstro, a 3D interactive viewer with these new analysis capabilities.SlicerAstro is a brand new module embedded in an existing visualisation package 3DSlicer which has been developed mainly for medical imaging and analysis purposes.These capabilities enhance the HI data inspection and allow faster analysis of complex sources than possible with traditional tools.