IVOA Executive Committee Meeting (FM80)

FM80 - Thu, 08 Nov 2018 - 17:30 Local Time (22:30 UTC) - Diamondback Room



FM80 - Thu, 11 Nov 2018 - 17:30 Local Time


Thursday 5:30 pm | 3 hours | (UTC-05:00) Eastern Time (US & Canada)
Meeting number: 735 768 124
Password: CollegePark
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Agenda FM80

  1. Roll Call and Agenda
  2. Minutes of TM79
  3. Review of Exec Actions
  4. Project Reports [Significant Events Only]
  5. Overall TCG Status
  6. Approval of new IVOA Recommendation(s) [Standing Item]
  7. Overall CSP Status
  8. Review terms up for expiration
    • Dec 2018
      • KDD: Kai Polsterer - Ch (1 yr. ext.)
    • May 2019
      • DataModel: Mark Cresitello-Dittmar - Ch (no ext.), Laurent Michel (no ext.)
      • GWS: Brian Major - Ch (no ext.), Giuliano Taffoni - VCh (no ext.)
      • Semantics: Mireille Louys - Ch (no ext.)
      • Theory: Carlos Rodrigo (I yr. ext.)
      • Ops: Tom McGlynn - Ch (no ext.), Mark Taylor (no ext.)
  9. Exec Secretary nominations
  10. Data to Dome, possible collaboration with planetarium community (CC)
  11. Fair Sharing discussion (CA)
  12. Relation of IVOA to IAU (MA)
  13. Netherlands Interop LOC ??
  14. Update of Northern Spring 2019 - Paris, France (May 12-17); B Cecconi
  15. Future Interops
    • Northern Autumn 2019 - Amsterdam, Netherlands - No sponsor
    • Northern Spring 2020 - TBD
  16. AOB
  17. Date of next Exec meeting
  18. Review of New Action Items
  • Reminder: IVOA Newsletter contributions are due 2 weeks after the Interop (Nov26)




The Australian All-Sky Virtual Observatory Nodes have seen major upgrades, in particular the AAO DataCentral (http://www.asvo.org.au/index.php/aao-data-central/) node and the MWA node (https://asvo.mwatelescope.org). All the nodes are currently working on integrating a single sign on system based on edugain. The MWA ASVO team had also been working on a new implementation of the VOSpace standard. This will be officially released during the Interop and ADASS in Maryland. Most of these activities are funded as part of the individual projects, but we are also looking into securing some funds specifically to support for travel and other overarching activities, which may also include the implementation of an Australian IVOA registry.


BraVO is a bit dormant at the time being. We're getting some graduate students and a post-doc to help on the developments from 2019 on.


  • China-VO hosted the 2nd East Asian Workshop on Astrostatistics and R language. The Workshop were held on July 9-13, 2018 in Nanjing´╝Œand on July 16-20, 2018 in Guiyang. A total of 129 participants from 28 astronomical research institutes of China, Japan, Vietnam and Mongolia attended to the workshop. Prof. Eric Feigelson from Penn State University is the instructor of the workshop. During the workshop, Prof. Feigelson covered the topics of density estimation & local regression, statistical inference, regression, multivariate clustering & classification, Bayesian inference, time series analysis, good statistical practices in astronomy, etc. and illustrated by code examples in R.
  • Telescope Access Program Became User of the China-VO. The Telescope Access Program (TAP) is a program to give astronomers based in China direct access to competitive instrumentation on intermediate- and large-aperture optical/infrared telescopes outside of China. Currently, the TAP Supported telescopes includes Canada-France-Hawaii Telescope(3.6m), Palomar Hale Telescope, Las Cumbres Observatory(1m network). The China-VO began to support proposal submission and data archiving of the TAP since September, 2018.
  • Chinese Astronomical Data Center passed CoreTrustSeal. On October 25, Chinese Astronomical Data Center (CAsDC) passed the CoreTrustSeal certification, and continues its Regular Membership in the WDS. The CAsDC is the first data center certified by the CoreTrustSeal in Asia.




Euro-VO partners have been active in the ASTERICS project leading the "Data Access, Discovery and Interoperability” work package. The ASTERICS project is now in its final year, finishing in April 2019.

Recent events have been:

The ASTERICS DADI “European Data Provider Forum and Training event”, held in Heidelberg June 27-28 2018, to support astronomy data providers become part of the VO framework and to share their experience. An important development is the inclusion of representatives from the European Solar Telescope (EST). This event also included an introductory course on the Virtual Observatory on 26 June and hands-on consulting sessions on data publication on 29 June.

ASTERICS DADI has also supported a special Time Series Data Model meeting, in Strasbourg, 17-20 July 2018

ASTERICS DADI partners have prepared the “4th DADI VO School" that will occur very soon (Nov 20-22, 2018 in Strasbourg) with about ~38 students and 10 tutors. Many of the tutorials have been updated and these training materials will be available on the Euro-VO pages following the event.

A final major event of the ASTERICS project will be the “The New Era of Multi-Messenger Astrophysics” symposium (http://multi-messenger.asterics2020.eu). The conference will be held at Martini Plaza in Groningen, the Netherlands, from Monday 25 March to Friday 29 March 2019.


  • ESASky 3.0 released in October with the following main features
    • Cross-matched between all XMM-Newton, HST and Herschel observations with all classified Solar System Objects
    • Simplified user interface with a “science and non-science user profiles”
    • Python wrapper to be able to insert ESASky in a Jupyter Notebook and interact (send data back and forth) with it
  • New TAP servers have been published for the XMM-Newton and European HST Archives
  • New Visibility and Observation planning protocols being proposed for IVOA discussion/endorsement. A very successful workshop at ESAC with 20 local participants and 33 external participants representing most major data providers in Astronomy world-wide where big interest in the protocols were expressed
  • New GUI for Euro-VO Registry development is progressing well, aim at operational release before Spring 2019 interop

France VO


The GAVO Data Centers in Heidelberg and Potsdam keep maintaining and developing services. New services and data collections since Victoria include a TAP-accessible dust map for 3 pi of the sky, an ephemeris service based on Gaia DR2, and a new catalog of expected microlensing events observable by Gaia (and beyond). Significant efforts also went into keeping our Registry services (RegTAP and GlotTS) in good shape, in particular in the face of issues at several major publishing registries. We also cooperated with VObs.it in bringing additional resources into the registry and improving VOTT, a listing of tutorial-like material built from the Registry (http://dc.g-vo.org/VOTT).

On the software development side, our publication suite DaCHS now has built-in https support, including letsencrypt-based certificate management, and experimental support for the proposed VOTable TIMESYS element. Numerous further improvements include improved support for nD-arrays, Aladin hints for URL-valued columns, and implementations of new features proposed for VODataService 1.2.

In standards, the a lot of work went into a working draft of VODataService 1.2 (with support for coverage, Data-like resources, expanded VOSI table metadata, and a lot more). We also kept honing the Provenance DM, and cooperated with the CDS in proposing a VOTable extension to declare time metadata.

Updates on what GAVO is doing are posted on a roughly monthly basis on https://blog.g-vo.org.






  • National funds secured until the end of 2020.
  • Manpower: 4 astronomers + 4 technical + 3 students.
  • Most relevant activities since July 2018
    • EPSC2018 2 oral contributions
      • A citizen-science project to identify NEAs and Mars crossers using the Virtual Observatory
      • Physical properties of asteroids using the WFCAM Transit Survey and the Virtual Observatory
    • SEA2018
      • The Gran Telescopio Canarias VO-compliant archive (oral)
      • The Pleiades as seen by TGAS and the VO (poster)
      • Clusterix. A VO tool for the determination of membership probabilities in stellar clusters (poster)
      • SVO Discovery Tool. A new tool to facilitate the discovery of archive information (poster)
      • VOSA for the characterization of high-mass X-ray binaries (poster)
      • Identification and characterization of ultracool dwafs in extragalactic fields using VO tools (poster)
      • VOSA. The Spanish VO SED Analyzer (poster)
      • Management of asteroseismic models in the VO framework (poster)
      • Identification and characterization of asteroids in large area surveys (RoPACS) using the Virtual Observatory (poster)
    • New filter added to the SVO Filter Profile Service. 4469 filter already available.



  • INAF is a partner in the ESCAPE project, recently approved for funding by the European Commission under the Horizon2020 programme and aimed at addressing the Open Science challenges shared by pan-European research infrastructures in astronomy and particle physics. The role of VObs.it staff in the project is the integration of astronomy VO data and services into the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC), i.e. implementing VO standards on top of EOSC services.
  • VObs.it (through INAF) supported the IVOA booth at the Vienna IAU GA, providing staff (Giulia Iafrate and Sara Bertocco) and display material. Giulia gave an invited talk on education in astronomy using VO-enabled tools and mechanisms.
  • Since September 2018 Marco Molinaro (DAL Chair) holds an INAF permanent position; Giulia Iafrate (IVOA Documentation Coordinator) has won a selection for an INAF permanent position and is expected to take up service within 2018.
  • Funding for VObs.it has slightly increased during 2018, and this has allowed opening two new positions for VObs.IT: the first one aimed at implementing archives of cosmological simulations on top of IVOA standards (e.g. SIMDAL), the second one to provide science support and documentation. Appropriate staff has been identified for both positions and are expected to start in January 2019.



  • LSST
    • Implementing TAP (using CADC software) and experimenting with an ADQL translator for QServ backend database.
    • Added support for ObsCore to Firefly.
    • Investigating a mapping from the LSST data model to ObsCore and CAOM2.
    • Beginning work on VOSpace and HiPS.
    • Looking at mapping LSST alert packets (currently using Apache Avro) to VOEvent.
    • Would like to have discussions on authenticated access to IVOA services, transport of large tabular data results, and improving Python client software.
  • AURA
    • Interested in Science Platform standardization.
  • NAVO
    • Focus on supporting science white papers for the Decadal Survey, due Jan 19 2019)
    • AstroData2020s Science Workshop, Pasadena, CA supports community preparation of white papers
    • Astrophysics Archives for the 2020s Special Session at the 233rd AAS meeting, Seattle (Jan 6-10 2019)
    • NAVO archives have supported NASA Science Mission Directorate (SMD) meetings to develop strategy for cross-disciplinary approach to data Archives, Processing and Data Exploitation.
    • The first major enchancement to the Python Astroquery library authored by NAVO has been accepted. NAVO has provided a simple standard way to access the Virtual Observatory Registry of available resources. Currently there are over 20,000 resources (tables, datasets, etc) which can be found in the VO registry.
    • There will be a workshop entitled "Using Python to Search NASA's Astrophysics Archives,” at the January AAS meeting.
    • The old USVOA web site has been redirected to the a NAVO site at https://heasarc.gsfc.nasa.gov/vo/summary/
    • NAVO plan on forming a data link working group to coordinate implementation across NAVO archives.
    • Chandra Source Catalog v2 (CSC2) close to production completion. We support VO interfaces to the catalog with further improvements planned once processing completes:
      • Demoed using WWT interface at the IAU (at both Chandra and IVOA booths)
      • Have SAMP connection from Catalog interface (CSCView) to TOPCAT
      • Have cone search web interface (CSCWeb)
      • File download capabilities in VO format or FITS
    • Several folks supported the IVOA booth at the AUI meeting in Vienna; went with 19 Chandra HIPs fields and demoed in ESASky
      • Plans to start production for the Chandra archive once CSC2 is completed. The 2 projects share compute resources
    • Several folks from the Chandra project attended/teleconed into the scheduling history and visibility meeting at ESA.
      • The meeting had good attendance from operations teams from differenct missions/facilities
    • Will have a F2F meeting at the AAS meeting in January
    • A decadal white paper are on the list of TBDs

Report from the TCG

  • Well attended TCG meeting this morning
  • 3 ongoing recommendation in the work:
    • PR-TAP 1.1
    • PR-UCDList-2.0
    • PR-Provenance-1.0
  • The TCG is committed to rework the IVOA architecture document; Rough plan:
    • Draft planned for Spring Interop
    • Complete on timeframe of Fall Interop

Topic attachments
I Attachment Action Size Date Who Comment
PDFpdf IVOA-May-2019-Paris.pdf manage 3511.6 K 2018-11-08 - 21:54 BaptisteCecconi IVOA-Interop-May-2019-Paris-Update
Topic revision: r21 - 2018-11-08 - FabioPasian
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