Gravitational Lens Modelling in a Citizen Science Context

"We develop a method to enable collaborative modelling of gravitational lenses and lens candidates, that could be used by non-professional lens enthusiasts. It uses an existing free-form modelling program (glass), but enables the input to this code to be provided in a novel way, via a user-generated diagram that is essentially a sketch of an arrival-time surface. We report on an implementation of this method, SpaghettiLens, which has been tested in a modelling challenge using 29 simulated lenses drawn from a larger set created for the Space Warps citizen science strong lens search. We find that volunteers from this online community asserted the image parities and time ordering consistently in some lenses, but made errors in other lenses depending on the image morphology."

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