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Meet the AAS Keynote Speakers: Dr. Alexander Szalay

3 Jan 2019, 16:54 UTC
Meet the AAS Keynote Speakers: Dr. Alexander Szalay
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In this series of posts, we sit down with a few of the keynote speakers of the 233rd AAS meeting to learn more about them and their research. You can see a full schedule of their talks here!
Figure 1. Dr. Alexander Szalay (Credit: Johns Hopkins University)The Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST), the next big astronomical survey that is due to begin science operations in 2023, will yield 60 petabytes of data over its ten-year lifespan. That’s 60 with 15 zeros after it. For comparison, let’s say a typical laptop stores one terabyte of data — LSST will require the equivalent of 60,000 laptops of storage. How will we store all this data? And once LSST is completed, how will we ensure the data is kept live and easily accessible so that astronomers of future decades can still use it? These are the questions that Dr. Alexander Szalay says “keep [him] up at night.”Dr. Szalay is the Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Physics and Astronomy and Computer Science at Johns Hopkins University. His journey to get there is atypical. He was born and raised in Hungary and graduated high school under Russian occupation. His decision to pursue science was only natural ...

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