Opening Keynote – Feryal Ozel

Feryal Ozel is a Professor of Astronomy and Physics at the University of Arizona. Dr. Ozel’s primary research interests are the physics of black holes, neutron stars, and theoretical high-energy astrophysics. She is Chair of NASA Astrophysics Advisory Committee, Chair of NASA Lynx Large Mission Concept Study, and the Lead of Event Horizon Telescope Modeling and Analysis Group. She received her PhD in astrophysics from Harvard University and was a Hubble Fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study in Princeton. She was awarded the American Physical Society Maria Goeppert Mayer Prize, was elected to the Science Academy in Turkey in 2013, and was elected a Fellow of the American Physical Society in 2015. She has been awarded a Radcliffe Fellowship, Guggenheim Fellowship, and Visiting Miller Professorship at UC Berkeley. In 2019, she shared the Breakthrough Prize and the National Science Foundation Diamond Achievement Award with the Event Horizon Telescope collaboration for taking the first image of a supermassive black hole. Dr. Ozel serves on numerous national committees and advisory boards in astrophysics and appears in science programs and documentaries worldwide.

Session Abstract

Astrophysical experiments of the current era generate the largest volume and rate of data encountered anywhere in the world. For example, the Event Horizon Telescope, which has taken the first image of a black hole in the nearby galaxy M87, has recorded 5 Petabytes of data over a 5-night observing campaign, while the Large Synoptic Survey is poised to image the entire sky at a high cadence and gather 20 Terabytes per night that needs to be processed in real-time. Different datasets pose different types of challenges, ranging from identifying weak signals to making robust statistical models. I will describe various problem-specific hardware and algorithmic solutions developed in the astrophysics community for these use cases and show that one approach does not fit all.