BCS Edinburgh Branch

From Light-Years to Terabytes: Astronomy and Computing

Alan Bridger

UK Astronomy Technical Centre

Wednesday 1 November 2000. 6.30pm

Apex Hotel, Grassmarket, Edinburgh

The UK Astronomy Technology Centre is the National Centre for the production of state of the art astronomical technology. I will briefly describe the work of the ATC, with emphasis on the computing and software issues, and then move on to discuss the use of computing and software technologies in Astronomy in a broader scope. Recent years have seen a relentless increase in data rates and volumes in Astronomy. This fact, coupled with the rise of the internet, is beginning to change the way we do astronomy. I will highlight some of the challenges that are on the horizon.

Alan is Head of Software Engineering at the UK ATC. He has spent 20 years involved in astronomical computing, covering a wide range of areas, and including 8 years at a major international observatory.