School of Earth and Environment

Alistair McDougall

Scientific Programmer (InSAR)

Email address: A.McDougall@leeds.ac.uk

Affiliation: Institute of Geophysics and Tectonics

Biography

I completed my PhD at the University of Canterbury NZ in 2014, working on the development of a high-performance computation method for planetary detections from gravitational microlensing events (http://www2.phys.canterbury.ac.nz/~u-lenser/). Through this work I developed an automated data pipeline to retrieve, process and model (single-lens) daily all of the current years microlensing event data on a cluster compute system. I extended this to include a planetary detection system using high-performance GPUs (Graphics Processing Units), which is able to process ongoing and completed events within a few hours, rather than the days to weeks it previously took.

After returning to the UK, I worked at the University of Oxford in the Clinical Trials Service Unit as a programmer/analyst. I was involved in the data curation and processing of medical records as part of the UK Biobank project (http://www.ukbiobank.ac.uk/), and developed software tools for several other various clinical trials.

At the University of Leeds I am now working as a Scientific Programmer on the development of a visualisation system for processed Sentinel-1 data.

Qualifications

  • PhD in Physics (University of Canterbury, NZ)
    • Thesis Title: Gravitational microlensing, an automated high-performance modelling system.

  • MPhy in Physics with Astrophysics (University of York, UK)
    • Thesis Title: Observational astronomy of asteroids.

Memberships/Fellowships

Awards/Funding:

  • Dennis William Moore Scholarship (2013-2014)
  • B G Wybourne Scholarship in Physics or Astronomy (2011)

Publications

Alistair McDougall; Michael D. Albrow (2015) Microlensing observations rapid search for exoplanets: MORSE code for GPUs, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society 456 (1): 565-570, doi: 10.1093/mnras/stv2609