Version 4.0 of the Montage Image Mosaic Engine Released: Data Cubes and more.

Version 4.0 is a major upgrade of Montage, released with a BSD 3-clause license. The distribution is available from Git Hub at and from the Montage web page at

The release supports aggregation of of data stored as data cubes (actually, multidimensional data sets with four dimensions) into mosaics, and a new command-line visualization tool. Details are a follows:

    • Five new modules dedicated to aggregating multidimensional input images in FITS format into mosaics of data cubes, and to supporting management and analysis of these cubes and their associated metadata. These modules are:
      1. mTranspose: Re-orders axes of multi-dimensional data sets.
      2. mProjectCube: Reprojects a single cube to the scale and coordinate system specified by the user; it supports all projections in the World Coordinate System (WCS) library; and it supports the “Drizzle” algorithm.
      3. mSubCube: Creates a subimage (“cutout”) of a cube.
      4. mShrinkCube: Reduces the size of a FITS cube according an input scaling factor.
      5. mAddCube: Co-adds the reprojected cubes to form the output mosaic.

All but mTranspose are analogs of modules for creating two dimensional mosaics.

    • Backwards-compatible updates to existing modules to support processing of data cubes.
    • A new module, mViewer, supports rendering from the command line of multi-dimensional images as well as large-scale images. It creates JPEG and PNG output files. The JPEG files contain AVM tags, which support incorporation of the images into the WorldWide Telescope (WWT) and other E/PO tools.
    • A beta version of a Python wrapper around mViewer to support incorporation into Python processing environments.
    • A tutorial on transposing the axes of data cubes using mTranspose
    • A tutorial on creating a mosaic from data cubes.

As with earlier releases, the new release is written in ANSI-compliant C and intended for use on all common Unix-based platforms. It was tested formally on RedHat Enterprise Linux Server 5.9 and on Mac OS X 10.9.x, with the gnu cc complier version 4.1, and the primary test data sets were public data cubes measured with the OSIRIS integral field spectrograph at the Keck Observatory and cubes released by the Galactic Arecibo L-band Feed Array HI (GALFA-HI) Survey.

Sample image

This image represents an average of the central 10 velocity planes of a mosaic of five data cubes released as part of the Galactic Arecibo L-band Feed Array HI (GALFA-HI) survey (Peek et al., 2011, Ap J Suppl, 194, 20; DOI 10.1088/0067-0049/194/2/20; ADS Bibcode 2011ApJS..194…20P). GALFA is a high-resolution (~4′), large-area (13,000 deg2), high spectral resolution (0.18 km s-1), and wide band (-700 km s -1 < v LSR < +700 km s-1) survey of the Galactic interstellar medium in the 21 cm line hyperfine transition of neutral hydrogen conducted at Arecibo Observatory. See the Data Cube Mosaics tutorial on how to compute a data cube mosaic such as this.


This entry was posted in astronomy, astronomy images, Astronomy software, Image mosaic, Image processing, Images, Integral Field Spectrographs, SMC, software, Software engineering and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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