Black Lives Matter #BlackInAstro

We support efforts made by Astrobites and the astronomy community toward inclusion, anti-racism, and awareness of social justice issues. The Astrobites collaboration is producing a series of posts to capture the latest research on diversity and inclusion, share stories of Black astronomers, and discuss ways to be better allies. Check out the whole #BlackInAstro series. Here in astro[sound]bites we are sharing research of Black astronomers as part of our regular podcast format, as well as working on episodes featuring the voices of marginalized scientists.

What is astro[sound]bites?

Three graduate students bring you cutting-edge research findings in astronomy and connect the dots between diverse sub-fields. Occasionally, we take you beyond new research to highlight stories in the field. Episodes are released every other weekend. Check out a few of our most recent episodes below!

Episode 24: The Stargazing Automata, Part IV

Planets and quenching and stars, oh my! In this finale to our four-part series on machine learning in astrophysics, the team hits the (virtual) road to hear from the experts. Our first stop is Irvine, California, where Tae Baxter teaches us that even galaxies struggle to stay active during quarantine. Next, we’re off to Porto, Portugal, where Ana Barboza uses the planetary ends to justify the k-means. We also make a pit stop for some banana-inspired techno.

Episode 22: The Stargazing Automata, Part II

Today we get to talk about everyone’s favorite problem: too much data and too little time! It’s not yet Halloween, but today’s spooky episode is full of GHOSTs and ASSASNs. Alex shares his recent work applying random forests to create a supernatural catalog and predictor of supernova types, and Will describes a tremendous classification effort to automatically sort variable stars.

Episode 21: The Stargazing Automata, Part I

This episode takes us into dark notions and oscillating questions! Malena spices rocks that orbit remote places and Will covers his dwarfs with tenderness and instability.

Okay, so none of this is true. But we used machine learning to generate this text! Episode 21 is the first in our three part series covering machine learning methods in astronomy.  First up? Neural networks! 

Episode 20: Power Law School

Why are power laws so ubiquitous in nature? And how can they teach us about space? In today’s episode, we dive into some classic research results to understand the properties of objects at all scales and sizes. Malena has her head in the (molecular) clouds, Will gets a little peculiar, and Alex takes pulsars for a spin.