Schanche, N, Cameron, AC, Hébrard, G, Nielsen, L, Triaud, AHMJ, Almenara, JM, Alsubai, KA, Anderson, DR, Armstrong, DJ, Barros, SCC, Bouchy, F, Boumis, P, Brown, DJA, Faedi, F, Hay, K, Hebb, L, Kiefer, F, Mancini, L, Maxted, PFL ORCID: 0000-0003-3794-1317, Palle, E, Pollacco, DL, Queloz, D, Smalley, B ORCID: 0000-0002-3456-087X, Udry, S, West, R and Wheatley, PJ (2018) Machine-learning Approaches to Exoplanet Transit Detection and Candidate Validation in Wide-field Ground-based Surveys. Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society. ISSN 1365-2966

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Abstract

Since the start of the Wide Angle Search for Planets (WASP) program, more than 160 transiting exoplanets have been discovered in the WASP data. In the past, possible transit-like events identified by the WASP pipeline have been vetted by human inspection to eliminate false alarms and obvious false positives. The goal of the present paper is to assess the effectiveness of machine learning as a fast, automated, and reliable means of performing the same functions on ground-based wide-field transit-survey data without human intervention. To this end, we have created training and test datasets made up of stellar light curves showing a variety of signal types including planetary transits, eclipsing binaries, variable stars, and non-periodic signals. We use a combination of machine learning methods including Random Forest Classifiers (RFCs) and Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs) to distinguish between the different types of signals. The final algorithms correctly identify planets in the test data ~90% of the time, although each method on its own has a significant fraction of false positives. We find that in practice, a combination of different methods offers the best approach to identifying the most promising exoplanet transit candidates in data from WASP, and by extension similar transit surveys.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: © 2018 The Author(s) Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Royal Astronomical Society This article is published and distributed under the terms of the Oxford University Press, Standard Journals Publication Model (https://academic.oup.com/journals/pages/open_access/funder_policies/chorus/standard_publication_model)
Uncontrolled Keywords: planets and satellites: detection; methods: statistical; methods: data analysis
Subjects: Q Science > QB Astronomy
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Divisions: Faculty of Natural Sciences > School of Physical and Geographical Sciences
Related URLs:
Depositing User: Symplectic
Date Deposited: 03 Dec 2018 09:14
Last Modified: 03 Dec 2018 09:14
URI: http://eprints.keele.ac.uk/id/eprint/5537

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