Core Projects

Our Core demonstration projects have pre-defined goals and associated research groups. They will make use of the full-scale Zooniverse platform and global community of citizen scientists, focussing on astronomy and disaster relief. Accompanying educational resources will enable school groups to become active participants, and the projects will also be open to the general public to get involved.

Herschel - tagging stars forming

Gaia - identifying supernovae

Disaster Relief - rapid response

The Herschel Space Observatory's rich science archive remains extremely valuable, and large parts of the archive are under-explored. It's observations in the sub-millimetre and far infrared wavelengths have provided data which have given us a unique view of the Milky' Way's extended gas and dust clouds. Accurate  identification  of  the  complex  structures  involved  in  the process  of  star  formation  is  a  pattern  recognition  task  that  eludes  even  sophisticated computer algorithms.

 

We will build a citizen science project to tag and map these structures in the Milky Way, and will publicly release a catalogue of these features for use by both citizen and professional scientists alike in studying the complex process of star formation.

Gaia is a groundbreaking ESA mission that will advance our understanding of how our galaxy and similar galaxies formed  and  evolved. It plans to chart one billion stars in the Milky Way, but will also  capture  the  transient  light

from exploding  stars  in distant galaxies.  In  its  first year of operations at  least one of these  is

likely to be from a type 1a supernova, a particular form of intensely bright explosion that can be  used  to  precisely  measure  the  expansion  of  the  Universe

 

Their  detection  requires  advanced

pattern recognition ability, very well suited to humans. This project will search for such an explosion among a billion stars, and will help to

refine future measurements of the age, expansion & basic properties of the Universe.

In the field of disaster relief and management,  fast  and  accurate  analysis  of  satellite and other data  produced  during  and  immediately  following  a  crisis  is critically important, particularly for those seeking to respond rapidly. But the volume of data can  be  overwhelming:  often  there  are  not  enough  experts  in  the world  to  comb  through data and extract high-value information within a useful timeframe.

 

In this project, through special arrangements with satellite imagery providers, we will make use of recent pre-crisis  imagery alongside post-disaster data  for  major crisis events,  to enable rapid evaluation of changes in terrain and population, and enable robust analysis of large and diverse image datasets.