Meet Helosia Mengisztki

Headshot of Helosia Mengisztki.

Helosia is an undergraduate student at Instituto Federal de Santa Catarina. She had the opportunity to participate in the 2023 LSST-DA Summer Student Program in Tucson, AZ. Learn about her research and what made the program so valuable, in her own words.

Tell us about your research.

Optimizing software infrastructure to compute photo-zs in the LSST scale: preparing for DR1. For the research, we utilized the DP0.2 dataset and DESC’s RAIL pipelines to model the total computation time required for calculating photometric redshifts (photo-z) on LineA’s computer cluster, Apollo. This modeling was performed as a function of various variables, including:

  • the type of storage hardware employed
  • the core algorithm chosen
  • the file formats used for input and output data
  • the compression applied to output data (photo-z PDF representation)

The primary objective was to conduct stress tests under different scenarios to assess whether the total runtime scales linearly with the dataset size and to identify bottlenecks, sources of slowness, and opportunities for workflow optimization in preparation for the Brazilian IDAC’s role in LSST DR1.

What did you enjoy the most about participating in the Summer Student Program this year?

The experience, the exposure, and the opportunity to ask questions and converse with people involved in such a huge and promising project.

What interested you in astrophysics, and what are your future goals?

I believe what truly fascinates me about astronomy and science, in general, is the opportunity to observe and contemplate the beauty of the universe and to realize that despite the low probability, here we are.
My future goals are to continue to study what I like and continue to discover what makes my heart flutter.

Why do you believe it is important for students like you to have STEM research opportunities like this?

Because it is such a great opportunity to feel like a small part of it and help us discover what we would like to do. It’s an inherently collaborative endeavor. These opportunities help undergrads get involved with the wider scientific community much earlier in their careers.