Glitches in LIGO

Thanh Hoang

20 December 2016

Science National Honors Society

The citizen science project that I chose to do is called: Gravity Spy. Gravity Spy is an interactive “glitch” identifier on Zooniverse, a website hosting many classification citizen science projects. With Gravity Spy, I am supposed to identify “glitches” in the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory’s (LIGO) data that are rendering them unable to accurately search for gravitational waves. Physics is an interesting subject that I am considering to major in when I attend college in the near future. After participating in this citizen science project, I feel like I know a bit more about physics and that searching for data is quite a bit harder than one would think, especially when it comes to gravitational waves.

Science in the community

Ana, Mackenzie, Eric, Jacob, and Erick doing the candle demo

On Valentine’s Day, 5 members of YHS SNHS visited Freedom Elementary School to spread some science love. Jacob, Eric, Ana, Mackenzie and Erick shared their knowledge about density with Mrs. Roland’s 7th grade science classes. The SNHS students demonstrated density by having the 7th grade students make observations about a small candle in water and a large candle in ethanol. The density of the candle compared to the ethanol makes the candle sink. However, the same candle floats when placed in water.

Candles in ethanol and water

The 7th grade students where then tasked with creating a density column using their new knowledge of density. The 7th grade students where given different colored liquids of different densities. They could then add them to a test tube in order of highest density to lowest density to create a colorful column. These columns are possible because a water solution with more sugar is more dense, causing the different layers to not mix!

Density column!

3-D Mapping the Brain

Madeliene Harris

My citizen science project was participating in the Eyewire 3-D mapping of the brain. To participate, I spent half an hour attempting to map neurons using the interactive software on the website. I would be given a cube in which I was to attempt to map the neuron from one side to another. I chose this project because the brain fascinates me. It seemed like a project that would be exciting, interesting, and beneficial to science. After participating, my brain felt really awake. I found myself recognizing patterns and trying different tactics to map out the neuron using the subtle clues in the images I was provided.

Gravity Spy


Christian Garcia



Citizen Science

The project I did was called Gravity spy and I basically was tasked with identifying gravitational waves. I helped by identifying blips and whistles in the LIGO gravitational wave detector; it was difficult at first because some things that I thought looked like blips, actually weren’t blips which would lead me to be more critical about what I though was and wasn’t a blip. I chose this project because I’ve already heard about the gravitational waves being discovered, so I wanted to see how the researchers identified the gravitational waves, plus it had to do with space. After completing my part I felt like I learned something new and interesting.

Website Used:


Anabel Blount

Citizen science Project

This project was about helping hydrologists from the University of Washington analyze forest snow interception patterns by looking at photos taken throughout Olympic National Park. To help I looked at many pictures and said whether there was snow on the trees or not and if there was how much snow was there. I chose this project because I wanted to know what kinds of things Hydrologists study. After completing my part I would still like to find out more about Hydrologists, but overall it was an enjoyable experience. I do think that this project doesn’t go into an in depth study or explanation of what a Hydrologists does but it did give an idea of some of the work they do.


Digital Fishers

Citizen Science Project

Jasmin Avlies

For my citizen science project I chose to do it on Digital Fishers. This project was an experiment that analyzes the absence of light and photosynthesis as a result of food being scarce in the deep sea. I was responsible for identifying the types of animals and the amount of animals that were attracted to the food patches that were set out. I chose to do this project because I really like sea animals and was very interested in the role I had in the project. Now that I have completed the project I feel great knowing I was able to help in getting closer to solving the problem.

ASU Trip 2016

Anthony Khalifeh

For the community project I went on the trip to the Department of Human Evolution at ASU. There we spoke to students and faculty members about what they do in their daily lives and what they do in their department. We learned about their research and how innovations in other fields help them in theirs and how they have to work with other experts to get more accurate information and how that will help them in the future. I learned a lot about the process of why they became students in their respective fields and why they love what they do. We put skulls from ancestors/relatives of the Homo sapiens in order and used key factors to determine the order of them. Their job is important because it allows us to learn about our past and how we got to the point we are today.