Tuesday, October 31, 2006

back to errors

Been a quiet couple of days recently. After the excitement of the discovery of the Ross-Shanks supercluster (which of course is well-know to the COSMOS team!) I've started my attempts on calculating errors on the AAOmega data. This should be relatively straight-forward, but I've heard that one before!

Also Sadler (Sydney) sent round here latest draft of her paper on Radio galaxies in the 2SLAQ LRG Survey.
This, coupled with noises coming out of Princeton, with an imminent Mandelbaum lensing paper, keeps everything nicely on the boil.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

The Ross-Shanks Supercluster (2)

Not to be out done by all the very pretty pictures floating around the Durham boys' blogs at the mo, I've stiched together a image of (what I'm calling the) Ross-Shanks supercluster, named after it's two maniac discovers.

Supercluster image.

The image is approximately 180 arcseconds on the side, is a composite created by the STIFF package (cheers Noz and JG) using imaging from the Suprime-Cam instrument on Subaru. The B, r' and i' bands are used.

Monday, October 23, 2006

The Ross-Shanks Supercluster

w(theta) from AAOmega *finally* done (how the fook was that so hard to do?!?!?!)

Clustering/bias evolution was last weeks in-thing but still v. relevant.

Spiral LRGs in COSMOS - we shall see!!

Meanwhile, re-looking at the COSMOS data and doing a very basic wedge plot Shanks and I are claiming discovery of the Ross-Shanks supercluster at z~0.67 RA=150.05, Dec=+2.5. So there.
(Let's not worry about the fact the nearly every major telescope in every EM-band has been pointing at this structure for the `proper' COSMOS survey.... ;-)

What's it gonna be? So hold me tight and don't let go!!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Radio cross-correlation and VVDS

Managed to finished off the 2SLAQ LRG-Radio Source cross-correlation for Sadler (Sydney) yesterday. Looks as if the Radio sources are more strongly clustered than the LRG autocorrelation, though, as always some more checks are needed. However, as suggested by Croom (Sydney), this can lead (via some assumptions!) to DM halo masses. V. interesting.

Also v. interesting was Meneux (INAF-IASF Milano, INAF-OA Merate) short seminar re-capping the recent results from the VIMOS VLT Deep Survey. Anyway, more about this later once I've considered the thesis implications (if any!!)

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


Sorry to report that there's not been much on the research front. Basically a cross between muchos faffing and lying in bed all of yesterday being a bit ill. :-(

Thursday, October 12, 2006

My so-called friends.


It turns out that Prof. Stephen Hawking did not phone me today. Gutted. It turns out I was the butt of a very cruel practical joke from my so-called friends. (These are the same "friends" that forced me to run a half marathon the other week....)

Anyway, let it be said that a couple of bored postgrads, with too much time on their hands, a Mac, telephone and a "sense of humour", can do a pretty good SH impression. You have been warned.

In other news, pretty pictures are on hold at the mo as I return to the w(theta) issue. However, this time it is for our AAOmega data and I'm reminding myself how much I love/hate the ol' SDSS CAS.



I've just received a phonecall from none other than *THE* Professor Stephen Hawking!!!
Just made my blindin' day.

He said he was looking for new personal assistant and I had been highly recommended by Prof. Shanks.

However, he also said my work was a pile of **** and that I should have a "Nice Day".
These last two comments have obviously made me suspicious it wasn't him afterall :-(

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

stiff in batch mode?

Slow day for numerous reasons and interuptions - grrrrr!!!!

Seems like "the mask" for the S11 field doens't make a huge amount of difference, but always nice to do things properly. Would be cool to get a decent correlation length but how exactly am I gonna work out the errors??

Need to get stiff working in batch mode. Otherwise it's me combining Subaru Bri bands for over 100 z~0.7 LRGs. Ouch!

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

pretty pictures

Had a good one the day.

The a.m. was spent getting the S11 data into the AAOmega xi(s) and I think I've just about managed to do this.

The p.m. was spent downloading public data from the COSMOS site and have proceeded to make a dozen or so pretty postage stamp pictures. Will continue with this endeavour tomorrow and would be v. sweet to have my piccys do some science for me....!!

Monday, October 09, 2006

cracked on

Cracked on with the AAOmega clustering getting the first sensible real-space correlation function.

Had a two hour meeting with El Supervisor discussing ways to finish the thesis "in a flourish" and in 3 months. This didn't include redshift z~7 galaxies (sadly) but he did mention that I have enough material and it's a matter on too much stuff out there rather than too little.

Butterley (Durham) raised a good point late on, wondering how much astronomical data goes unused. We both suspected it could well be quite a lot.

Thursday, October 05, 2006


Thursday, October 5th 2006. 09:53. After just over 3 years of PhD work, The 2SLAQ Luminous Red Galaxy Survey: The 2-Point Correlation Function and Redshift-Space Distortions paper was submitted to MNRAS.

I then took a 5 minutes break to read about the BBC News website and then it was back to the grindstone.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Dr. Brown

Just a quick post to say well done and a great big Aussie "Good on yer mate" to Tony.

After a (relatively short) 2 hour viva voce this a.m., The Bone emergerd unscaythed and with only some minor corrections. No doubt Walkabout, the new Freshers and most of Durham will also know all about this one by the end of the night!!

Tuesday, October 03, 2006

Numb Encore

Good day. Convinced myself (and TS) enough about the w(theta) issues. However, Shanks (Durham) got fixedated on a couple of points at ~200 arcmin scales. Now, as usual, he makes a good point - that in physical scales, the 2SLAQ LRG is much wider than deep, so the w(theta) is as good an estimator as xi(r) - and so is another thing worth investigating, but not right now!!

new blogs!!

Just a quick note to give a shout out to some recent blogs that have come to my attention.

The links should be updated on th right, so surf away and if there are any comments, queries or just general chat, as always, let us know!

The Blue Boy

Monday. Pretty good progress made in the day (must have been something to do with El Supervisor being in the office all-day long doing CTIO apps!!) and am now reasonably convinced that there is no angular systematic in the w(theta). (I didn't think so before but evidence is always nice).

Tuesday. Had a couple of thoughts overnight about how to tidy-up a couple of things again re: the w(theta), Jon Loveday's comments and the Limbers formula stuff. Be so nice to get everything v. close by Thursday lunchtime.

Monday, October 02, 2006

2hours 5minutes


Just a quick early-doors post to let you know that the Great North Run was completed in said time. Superb day out, really capturing a lot which is wholesome, altruistic and generally good about the human spirit.

Gonna be a very busy week. Friday didn't see much getting done, apart from the first tentative steps to see if there is an angular systematic in the 2SLAQ w(theta). This would be very interesting to know and I think there's a (relatively) simple way to find out.

The LRG-Radio cross-correlation also is still waiting to be re-checked.

Apparently, all the new PhD students could arrive today. Time to be leaving me thinks...