The sensitivity of Gravitational Waves detectors is limited by several types of noise, called glitches, whose presence affects the quality of the data. The glitches can have various origins, having a stationary nature (e.g. a noise signal with a stable frequency) or being transient on various timescales. In order to optimize and run the interferometers it is fundamental to identify the sources of noise and reduce or eliminate its origin.
In this framework, citizen scientists can play a fundamental role by looking at chunks of data and identify the presence of noise, creating the basis to train machine learning algorithms that will automatically recognize and isolate noise in GW data, thus providing a monitoring of the noise with an unprecedented detail. Citizen scientists' support will be crucial also to isolate astrophysical signals that cannot easily be modeled with the general relativity equations, and whose shape is unknown, such as supernovae ones.
In REINFORCE, the citizen science activities will support the optimization of the Virgo detector, allowing citizens to learn the basics of GW detection techniques, and how the noise signals and GW signals look. One of the innovative aspects of the project is that it aims to include diverse and underrepresented groups in science, by providing them with tools to overcome specific barriers, such as the sonification of data for visually-impaired people.
The webinar aims to give an overview of the first of REINFORCE Large Scale Citizen Science demonstrators which are the key vehicles that the project will utilise in order to bring frontier science and society together, showcasing the issue that the citizens will be asked to help in solving, how this activity will be performed relying on Zooniverse resources and technologies, and how the sonification of data will allow to widen the spectrum of people potentially involved.
Who should attend?
15:00-15:05 - Welcome - Chris Lintott (Zooniverse)
15:05-15:12 - Broad overview - Stavros Katsanevas (EGO, Project Coordinator)
15:12-15:25 - REINFORCE Gravitational Wave Noise Hunting Demonstrator - Massimiliano Razzano (University of Pisa, WP3 leader)
15:25-15:40 - The use of sonification in REINFORCE - Beatriz Garcia (CONICET)
15:40-15:50 - Virgo and international GW network - Julia Casanueva (Virgo)
15:50-15:55 - Introduction to the European Gravitational Observatory - Francesca Spagnuolo (EGO, EU Program Coordinator)
15:55-16:05 - GW and Citizen Science for education - Emmanuel Chaniotakis (EA)
16:05-16:15 - Q&A and wrap-up
Oh wow, this sounds very fascinating but also quite complex. As a citizen scientists, do I need any specific knowledge to be able to take part in your project?
Our aim is to have anyone - and everyone! - be able to participate in our REINFORCE demonstrator projects. All demonstrators will come with straightforward and easy to understand documentation and tutorials explaining the classification procedure and providing background information, while participants will also be able to interact with members of the REINFORCE community, via Zooniverse, in the case of difficulties. REINFORCE is, by design, all about participation and inclusion. We hope that people arriving without even a basic knowledge of physics will be able to develop an understanding of some of its concepts and that, above all, they will feel part of a community of people doing something worthwhile.