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Journal Articles Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A Year : 2018

Deep convolutional neural networks as strong gravitational lens detectors

C. Schaefer
  • Function : Author
M. Geiger
  • Function : Author
T. Kuntzer
  • Function : Author


Context. Future large-scale surveys with high-resolution imaging will provide us with approximately 105 new strong galaxy-scale lenses. These strong-lensing systems will be contained in large data amounts, however, which are beyond the capacity of human experts to visually classify in an unbiased way. Aim. We present a new strong gravitational lens finder based on convolutional neural networks (CNNs). The method was applied to the strong-lensing challenge organized by the Bologna Lens Factory. It achieved first and third place, respectively, on the space-based data set and the ground-based data set. The goal was to find a fully automated lens finder for ground-based and space-based surveys that minimizes human inspection.
Methods: We compared the results of our CNN architecture and three new variations ("invariant" "views" and "residual") on the simulated data of the challenge. Each method was trained separately five times on 17 000 simulated images, cross-validated using 3000 images, and then applied to a test set with 100 000 images. We used two different metrics for evaluation, the area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) score, and the recall with no false positive (Recall0FP).
Results: For ground-based data, our best method achieved an AUC score of 0.977 and a Recall0FP of 0.50. For space-based data, our best method achieved an AUC score of 0.940 and a Recall0FP of 0.32. Adding dihedral invariance to the CNN architecture diminished the overall score on space-based data, but achieved a higher no-contamination recall. We found that using committees of five CNNs produced the best recall at zero contamination and consistently scored better AUC than a single CNN.
Conclusions: We found that for every variation of our CNN lensfinder, we achieved AUC scores close to 1 within 6%. A deeper network did not outperform simpler CNN models either. This indicates that more complex networks are not needed to model the simulated lenses. To verify this, more realistic lens simulations with more lens-like structures (spiral galaxies or ring galaxies) are needed to compare the performance of deeper and shallower networks.
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Dates and versions

insu-03666278 , version 1 (12-05-2022)



C. Schaefer, M. Geiger, T. Kuntzer, J. -P. Kneib. Deep convolutional neural networks as strong gravitational lens detectors. Astronomy and Astrophysics - A&A, 2018, 611, ⟨10.1051/0004-6361/201731201⟩. ⟨insu-03666278⟩
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