How to suggest a breakout session topic for Rubin 2024

The Science Organizing Committee (SOC) welcomes suggestions for breakout session topics during the Rubin Community Workshop 2024 (July 22-26, SLAC, Menlo Park CA).

Please share your ideas either as a reply in this topic, or by starting a new topic in the “Science - Rubin Community Workshop 2024” category with the title “Suggested Breakout Session: ”.

Deadline: The SOC would appreciate having your suggestions by Fri Apr 5 to allow sufficient time for creating the workshop schedule and for session chairs to be identified and fulfill their duties.

If you’re interested in (co-)chairing the session please indicate that in your post (or contact @MelissaGraham) and the SOC will be in touch.

For inspiration, consider:

  • What would you like to learn about Rubin Observatory and the LSST?
  • What LSST-precursor science have you been working on recently?
  • What is the first analysis you want to do with the LSST data?

Anyone may suggest and discuss potential breakout sessions, even if they’re not yet registered or unsure of whether they will be able to attend.

Please continue to suggest and discuss topics after Fri Apr 5. Topics that can’t be fit into the workshop schedule or accommodated in existing sessions can become the basis for the Unconference* session on Wednesday afternoon.

*What is an Unconference?

The last breakout session on Wednesday afternoon is an Unconference. There are no pre-scheduled sessions for this time slot. Instead, over the first three days of the meeting attendees use a suggestion board to post ideas for emergent breakout topics and vote for the ones they would like to attend. During the coffee break immediately before the time block, the SOC matches the available conference room sizes to the suggested topics based on votes.

I propose a session on streak detection and masking. I am willing to present and possibly (co-)chair if I may do so virtually and on 22–23 July. The goal is to familiarize science users with the Project’s plans for dealing with various flavors of streaks from non-astrophysical sources.

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I would like to suggest a breakout session on the Rubin Undergraduate Network. This is a group of faculty at primarily undergraduate institutions involved with Rubin and Rubin science collaborations. We are looking for ways to better involve undergraduates in Rubin data and research and ways to support and collaborate with other researchers at PUIs and beyond. I am willing to co-chair the session.


I would like to see the Rubin Science Community to be invited to propose half-day to multi-day parallel meetings along the lines of what has been done at LSST@Europe. I’ve found the LSST@Europe format to be more conducive to scientific coordination and collaboration than the crowd sourced, PCW breakout session format. I’ve observed a lot of interest in Rubin Science meetings in the US without the resources to easily convene them. Rubin 2024 could provide a forum to help serve that need.

I would like to suggest a breakout session on Rubin carbon footprint, to inform the community on current calculations here and ongoing estimates for operations at SLAC, as well as discuss ways to reduce it. This will also help science collaboration estimate their carbon footprint within the Rubin ecosystem.


I would like propose a session dedicated to TVS science, where people belonging to the TVS collaboration (or who have carried out work relevant to TVS) can present how they are getting ready for Rubin operations. Last year at PCW we had a very useful TVS session which was more focused on the SC organization rather than the science. It is time to switch gear now. I would be available to chair in person and Sara Bonito gave her availability to co-chair the session remotely.


It would be nice to have a breakout session focused on infrastructure for image-level reprocessing of Rubin data.

Many Rubin science cases (across different SCs) will involve reprocessing or running custom pipelines/algorithms on tens/hundreds of thousands/millions of Rubin images. As we move towards commissioning, it would be nice to have a breakout focused on whether Rubin will have a cutout service in place, what parameters users will be allowed to tweak in such a service, and what the throughput/throttling of such a service will be.

(I guess instead of a breakout session, this could also be a talk from someone with the relevant expertise/knowledge).


You may be interested in checking out the following Rubin cutout tool tutorial!

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I would like to suggest a breakout session focusing on the Photometric Redshift codebase for the Rubin extragalactic content. At the time of PCW, the Redshift Infrastructure Assessment Layers (RAIL) will have its v1.0 release, and the RAIL team would like to encourage the Rubin community to contribute to this photo-z codebase with relatively stable API, which eventually serves back the photo-z users of the community. The effort needed involves developing stages for degrading catalogs under different conditions, putting existing photo-z estimation methods into RAIL, adding photo-z metrics to the evaluation stages, applying RAIL to different kinds of data, and more!

During the session, we would like to introduce the core concepts and API of RAIL, followed by a hands-on tutorial session for (1) how to set up a working RAIL pipeline, (2) how to develop a new RAIL stage

We are open to an arrangement by the SOC with other photo-z topics if necessary. I am open to co-chair the session.

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I would like to propose a session focusing on morphology (on behalf of GSC Morphology Working Group). The imaging quality that LSST will deliver will provide significantly more morphological information for a far greater number of objects than any previous large survey (including low-surface-brightness features like tidal streams, tails etc.). A wide range of approaches are being developed, including visual classification via citizen science in combination with machine learning, unsupervised approaches, parametric models and non-parametric measures in order to efficiently deal with the sheer volume of data, which precludes many traditional approaches. Given the now close proximity of science data from Rubin, the goal would be to hear from researchers in the field on how they are preparing for LSST data and to discuss any technical requirements they may have as well as science requirements of the wider community.

My area of interest is in extragalactic morphological classification, but more broadly there are a large number of ‘big-data’ science challenges relevant to Rubin, beyond more fundamental infrastructure and data management challenges. So if there are any interest in related topics, it may be useful to instead hold a broader session. I am open to co-chair a session on either of these topics. There is probably some overlap with Aritra’s suggestion as some applications will require access to large quantities of image-level data and/or significant CPU-time. As part of the session, it would be valuable to hear from people with expertise on this what will be possible to do with the Rubin Science Platform and what the alternatives are for anything that isn’t.

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I would like to propose a session on science use cases for in-kind computing resources. This session will be informed by the workshop we held on Supporting Computational Science with Rubin LSST, but feature updates on discussions between science collaborations and computing resource providers, discuss the role of the Resource Allocation Committee, and allow for further science community input on how to plan for computationally intensive science analyses.

I and Sierra Villarreal are open to co-chairing this session.

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The In-kind Program Coordinators would like to propose a “Rubin In-kind Program Community Session”
The Rubin Observatory In-kind Program comprises over 150 diverse contributions from the international community spanning Telescope Time, Datasets, Data Access Centres and Computing resources, Operations offsets and Software received by Science Collaborations and the Observatory. In this session, the In-kind Program team will provide an overview of the program status, and the resources and support available to recipient groups and contributors. The talks will be followed by a Q&A session and In-kind Program Coordinators will be present to discuss specific programs and contributions. A related session on Independent Data Access and Scientific Processing Centres is also being proposed.
I would be able to co-chair this session.

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On behalf of the microlensing subgroup of TVS SC, I would like to propose a break-out session focused on early plans for microlensing science included but not limited to developing a platform for coordinating follow-up observations, and discussing our plans for an end-to-end analysis pipeline.
We would like to kindly request that we have a morning session if possible to accommodate for our remote participants in Europe.

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I would like to propose a breakout session on synergies between Rubin and the Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope. Possible subtopics include:
(1) Update on responses to the “R2D2” report
(1) Synergies with Rubin in the design of the Roman Core Community Surveys;
(2) Time-domain and time-series strategies and tools;
(4) Optimizing joint photometry and shape measurements;
(3) Optimizing joint photometric and spectroscopic redshifts

Some of these subtopics may end up overlapping with other breakouts (e.g. joint processing, or survey design), so some consolidation may make sense.

There is also some subject-matter overlap with the SUPER-IRNET workshop in Japan going on at the same time, so coordination (at least as far as avoiding overlapping times) to facilitate remote attendance at the Roman-related sessions in either workshop might be beneficial.

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It might already be planned, but just in case I would like to suggest a session where the SCOC provides an update on cadence/cadence deliberations update that is separate from the proposed early science session.

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I propose a Community Science Support Session or talk where there would be an introduction to the Community Science Team and its role including a presentation/discussion of what the CST’s plans are from late 2024 up to the start of science operations and the first data release in terms of developing/hosting/creating resources, websites, documentation, demos, workshops, and tutorials for the community. There could also be a discussion period for feedback from attendees in terms of what support they think they’ll need and would like to see from the CST.

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I would like to propose a breakout session on “Outreach and public engagement for Rubin and LSST” . The recent cosmological results, most recently the very revealing DESI papers, have no shortage of excitement with them. So it is high time for us to be able to effectively communicate the scale of the kind of insights Rubin and LSST are bringing to the table, and possibly even elucidate how our work corresponds with works of other collaborations too. I feel it would be interesting and very worthwhile to talk about this, as it would bring about a chance for everyone to present their ideas on such an accessible yet important topic in a proper event and I feel it could thus eventually bring about nice directions of thought in how we approach public engagement and outreach thereafter.

I would be very happy to co-chair this session remotely if possible, as coming to SLAC in person in that month may be difficult.

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  1. Survey Cadence

We would like to propose a discussion on the recent survey cadence simulations and their impact on SC science (suggested by the DESC Survey Coordination working group, led by Philippe Gris and Jeff Newman).

  1. What is the policy / process for bulk data transfers? How does data get transferred to the community in bulk?

We propose a discussion on both technical and policy/process aspects that are necessary to support bulk data transfers, and the conditions for when/how bulk data transfers will occur.

The Rubin Data Policy (RDO-13) states:

“DPOL-512 Bulk Downloads: Rubin Observatory expects to support bulk data download services for significant fractions of the proprietary or public data through a process to be determined in the future. Rubin Observatory reserves the right to charge for the full cost of providing this service or to restrict access to this capability for policy or programmatic reasons.”

We are interested to learn more about current plans for this process, as well as possibilities for commissioning/testing this method of data access. This was developed within the DESC computing and technical coordinator teams.

  1. Developing guidance for IDACs and their engagement with SCs

We propose a session on the Rubin IDACs and how Science Collaborations should be engaging with the IDAC proposals from groups closely associated with their science.

Can IDACs provide specific processing/simulation/analysis needs to particular SCs in addition to login node/resources to the general Rubin science community?
How should requests for computing be processed, with or without Rubin oversight? This suggestion originated from the DESC computing coordinator team.

  1. Collaboration between Rubin Observatory and Science Community to inform LSST Data Releases

Discussion on the process through which Rubin Observatory and the Science Community will collaborate to scientifically validate pipelines and data products with the goal of informing LSST data releases during Operations.

How can the science community most effectively provide input during LSST Operations that will influence ongoing development of Science Pipelines and the Alert Production and Data Release Processing campaigns for LSST Data Releases? How can the science community iterate on development and testing together with Rubin Observatory?

Some of the plans for these interactions are described in the “Model for Community Science” (RTN-006), e.g., in Section 2.4 “Interfaces Within the Rubin Community” and Section 2.5 “Coordinating Expertise”.

In order for the community to provide the most timely and specific input, it would be helpful to define some set of common data products that both the Project and (at least some representatives of) the science community have access to for the purpose of testing and iteration on a faster cadence than the planned ~annual data releases. For example, if a new algorithm / pipeline configuration is being considered for an upcoming survey-scale DRP processing campaign that may take months to complete, it would be helpful for (at least some representatives of) the science community to be able to analyze example data products / performance diagnostics. Relative to the timeline for preparing an LSST data release, when is input from the science community actionable?

A description of internal Project plans for survey-scale DRP data process campaigns, including pilot processing runs and plans for QA, might be helpful context for the discussion.

The spirit of the conversation is to better understand how the science community can help to reduce the risk that an LSST Data Release has some substantially compromised scientific utility. This collaboration could take many different forms.

In a scenario where normative Project construction requirements are met, but released data products are not viable for certain science cases and/or the science community has identified opportunities to enhance data products through modified data processing / operational procedures, how should this feedback be communicated to the Rubin Observatory and what process will Rubin Observatory use to respond in the LSST Operations era?

  1. Status of PSF modeling

We propose a session to discuss the status of PSF modeling capabilities both in the DM science pipelines (i.e. PIFF) and in external development. Of particular interest for DESC are efforts to model/correct for the chromatic dependence of PSF size, which has been shown to introduce significant shear bias if unaccounted for. Proposed by Claire-Alice Hebert and Erin Sheldon

Hi, I would like to propose a session on how should broker data products be integrated into the Rubin Science Platform (RSP). Brokers are developing many tools using external infrastructure (on premise or cloud based), external tools (pipelines), and are giving access to data in different ways (streams, databases, APIs, clients, web interfaces). There is a risk that the broker infrastructure does not connect well with the Rubin data products and tools. To plan ahead we first need to determine what would be the most important use cases from the science collaborations and the general users as well as the currently planned broker data products and services. Then, we need to think of ways to integrate brokers data products into the RSP and Rubin data products into broker pipelines. For example, brokers will need some user authentication APIs coming from Rubin, as well as the possibility of doing some processing next to the data (probably in the RSP). Users will probably want live copies of broker derived data products in the RSP in order to do their science, an perhaps some way to ingest the broker outputs in real time from the RSP.
Cheers, Francisco

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I really enjoyed last year’s session on Machine Leraning and AI, but I do not see one on this topic “per-se” here. So here I go proposing it.