CI: – Dr. Paul Lasky

The LIGO collaboration has now announced gravitational-wave detections of six black hole collisions and one neutron star collision. We know about the properties of these detections from a process called Bayesian parameter estimation, which allows us to make astrophysical inferences from the complicated, noisy data that comes from the gravitational-wave instruments. Until now, the LIGO collaboration has used a ten-year old piece of software called LALInference for this process. At Monash, and as part of OzGRav, we have developed a new code – Bilby: a user-friendly Bayesian inference library for gravitational-wave astronomy. The LIGO collaboration has recently announced that Bilby is going to be the official code that LIGO adopts to do all astrophysical inference starting in 2019. Bilby will be the code that analyses and publishes all gravitational-wave events detected throughout 2019 and into the foreseeable future.
In the previous quarter, ADACS software development support was provided to build a user-interface to Bilby. This interface allows users to submit Bilby parameter-estimation jobs to the Swinburne OzStar cluster; it runs only on fake gravitational-wave signals that are injected into Monte Carlo noise realisations. We see the Bilby-UI as the future of doing astrophysical inference on all gravitational-wave events. It significantly lowers the bar for entry into this field, bringing expert-level data analysis to the novice user. But for this to happen, the Bilby-UI must be given the ability to run on proprietary LIGO data.
This software support application plans to enable Bilby-UI users to access proprietary LIGO data with appropriate LIGO credentials, interface with the LIGO system that allows one to easily access the correct data segment associated with detected events, and ultimately submit jobs to the LIGO CalTech cluster where production science for LIGO is done. This project will provide significant and high-demand output for the international community of gravitational-wave astronomers.