CAM Student Research Award - Summer 2016

December 15, 2016

The Center for Applied Mathematics (CAM) provides students with research opportunities every summer. There are guidelines and requirements for students to follow throughout their research. Each fall, summer research faculty advisors vote for the best student research project. Liam Coulter, with faculty advisor Thomas Höft, received the 2016 Summer CAM Student Research Award.

Liam's Bio: I am a senior applied mathematics major with minors in mechanical engineering and philosophy. I plan to graduate in the spring of 2017, and then to pursue graduate study in applied mathematics, or engineering. The focus of my research with Dr. Hoft was astronomical image deblurring for optical navigation, which I hope to continue studying in graduate school. In addition to mathematics research, I enjoy activities such as rock climbing, playing jazz, and reading.

Research Project Abstract: This project focuses on image deblurring and centerfinding for astronomical optical navigation. Optical navigation (OPNAV) has been in use in multiple spacecraft for many years, and is an important component of spacecraft navigation. However, OPNAV deals with images which are blurry and contain noise, so image processing is an integral part of OPNAV. This project seeks to solve traditional OPNAV problems with a new approach: deblurring using inverse matrix linear algebra, paired with centerfinding techniques. To accomplish this we use filtering, regularization, and sparse inversion methods. A discussion of both visual results and quantitative results is given, and of which methods perform best in each category. Then, possible conclusions, as well as future directions are discussed.