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19 views8 pagesAbstract: I present the progress that I have made towards implementing a Square Root Information Filter (SRIF) into the asteroid-modelling software shape. First, I implemented a global-parameter optimizer to replace the existing sequential optimizer. I then compared SRIF’s performance with the current fitting algorithm, with the conclusion that SRIF has the potential to perform substantially better than its predecessor. I present the results of SRIF operating on previously collected delay-doppler data for the asteroid 2000 ET70. I also discuss future changes to improve shape’s fitting speed and potential accuracy.

Dec 18, 2014

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Abstract: I present the progress that I have made towards implementing a Square Root Information Filter (SRIF) into the asteroid-modelling software shape. First, I implemented a global-parameter optimizer to replace the existing sequential optimizer. I then compared SRIF’s performance with the current fitting algorithm, with the conclusion that SRIF has the potential to perform substantially better than its predecessor. I present the results of SRIF operating on previously collected delay-doppler data for the asteroid 2000 ET70. I also discuss future changes to improve shape’s fitting speed and potential accuracy.

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Abstract: I present the progress that I have made towards implementing a Square Root Information Filter (SRIF) into the asteroid-modelling software shape. First, I implemented a global-parameter optimizer to replace the existing sequential optimizer. I then compared SRIF’s performance with the current fitting algorithm, with the conclusion that SRIF has the potential to perform substantially better than its predecessor. I present the results of SRIF operating on previously collected delay-doppler data for the asteroid 2000 ET70. I also discuss future changes to improve shape’s fitting speed and potential accuracy.

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IMAGES

Adam H. Greenberg and Jean-Luc Margot

University California: Los Angeles

Draft version October 8, 2014

ABSTRACT

We present the progress that has been made towards implementing a Square Root Information Filter

(SRIF) into the asteroid-modelling software shape. First, we implemented a global-parameter optimizer to replace the existing sequential optimizer. We then compared SRIFs performance with the

current fitting algorithm, with the conclusion that SRIF has the potential to perform substantially

better than its predecessor. We present the results of SRIF operating on previously collected delaydoppler data for the asteroid 2000 ET70. We also discuss potential future changes to improve shapes

fitting speed and accuracy.

Keywords: asteroids, 2000 ET70, shape, model

1. INTRODUCTION

Earth-based radar is a powerful tool for gathering information about bodies in the Solar System. Radar can

dramatically improve the determination of orbital elements of both planets and minor bodies (such as asteroids and comets). An important development in the past

two decades has been computing asteroid shapes based

on their radar signature (Hudson & Ostro 1994; Ostro

et al. 1995; Hudson & Ostro 1995). This problem is not

trivial without information about the spin axis of the

asteroid, the underlying shape of the body cannot be

uniquely determined from radar images. Furthermore,

even if spin information were known, certain peculiarities of radar images (such as the many-to-one mapping

between surface elements on the object and pixels within

the radar image) make recovery of the physical shape extremely difficult (Ostro 1993). The best method to accomplish this is by fitting a model for the physical shape

to the observed radar images. Unfortunately, this is a

computationally intensive problem, potentially involving

hundreds to thousands of free parameters, and millions

of data points.

Despite the computational cost, astronomers are keen

on deriving shape information from asteroid radar images. The most compelling reason to do so is the fact

that radar is the only Earth-based technique that can

produce detailed 3d information of near-Earth objects.

This is possible because radar instruments achieve spatial resolutions that dramatically surpass the diffraction

limit. In other words, radar instruments can resolve objects substantially smaller than the beamwidth of the antenna used to obtain the images. For example, Arecibo,

the primary instrument used for the data presented in

this paper, has a beamwidth of 2 arcminutes. Yet

Arecibo can easily gather shape information to an accuracy of decameters for objects several millions of kilometers from Earth, achieving an effective spatial resolution

of 1 milliarcsecond.

Radar has other advantages as well. Unlike most observational techniques inside the Solar System, radar does

not rely on any external sources of light, be it reflected

sunlight, transmitted starlight, or thermal emission.

flexibility with respect to the observations. Radar also

has the ability to probe an objects sub-surface properties, which can give important information about the

object such as porosity, surface and sub-surface dielectric

constant, and the presence of near-surface ice.

There are also various reasons why asteroid shape data

are so important. For certain asteroids, reliable determination of an orbital future cannot be determined without

shape information. The Yarkovsky effect, for example,

can change an asteroids semi-major axis over several orAU

bital periods, on the order of 104 M

y

yr (Vokrouhlick

et al. 2000; Bottke et al. 2006; Nugent et al. 2012). This

effect occurs because the rotating body absorbs sunlight

and then re-emits that light in a non-sunward direction,

resulting in a gentle perturbation to the asteroids orbit.

The Yarkovsky effect is greatly dependent on the shape

of the object, since re-emission of absorbed sunlight is

a surface phenomenon. This effect is the strongest nongravitational perturbational effect for objects with diameters less than 2 km, but must also be taken into account

for any near-earth asteroids (NEA) when evaluating impact probabilities precisely (Giorgini et al. 2002; Chesley

et al. 2013; Farnocchia et al. 2013).

Knowledge of the shape also provides clues about the

formation and interaction history of asteroids. For example, radar-derived shapes of asteroids have been instrumental in identifying binary asteroids and contact

binaries, which represent 16% and 10% of the population, respectively (Margot et al. 2002; Benner et al.

2008). They have also provided strong evidence that

NEA binaries form by a spin-up and mass shedding process (Margot et al. 2002; Ostro et al. 2006). For single

asteroids, knowledge of the morphology guides interpretation of the collisional history and surface modification

processes.

Shapes also affect spin evolution during two-body interactions (e.g., torques during close planetary encounters) and orbital evolution of binary NEAs (e.g., tidal,

gravitational, and non-gravitational interactions between

components) (e.g., Margot et al. 2002; Ostro et al. 2006;

& Nesvorn

y 2010; Jacobson

Figure 1. A time-series of delay-Doppler images of the asteroid 2000 ET70 (Naidu et al. 2013), starting in the top left and proceeding to

the right. These images were taken 18 minutes apart. Distance from the observer increases downwards, and Doppler increases to the right.

needed when calculating the gravity environment near

asteroids, which is of special importance for proximity

operations (Fujiwara et al. 2006; Naidu et al. 2013; Nolan

et al. 2013; Takahashi & Scheeres 2014).

2. CURRENT METHOD

software package (Hudson & Ostro 1994; Magri et al.

2007). shape takes a model for the asteroid, which is

based on both shape and spin parameters, as well as

scattering behavior, and projects that model

shape takes a model for the asteroid, which is based

on both shape and spin parameters, as well as scattering

behavior, and projects that model into the same space

as that of the radar observables. This space, called the

range-Doppler space, has dimensions of range and lineof-sight velocity (figure ??fig-radar)).

(shape) then compares the mapping of the model into

this space to the radar observables, and makes changes

to the model parameters in an attempt to minimize the

residuals. shape uses increasing model complexity to

build up a representation for the asteroid, from a basic

ellipsoid model to capture gross features, to a spherical

harmonic model which can represent finer surface elements (See section 5.1) and finally a vertex model.

shape currently uses a Sequential Parameter Fit

(SPF) mechanism to adjust the model following a comparison between the model projection and the radar observables. SPF iterates through each parameter of the

model and minimizes the 2 for that individual parameter using a bracket and brent method (Press et al.

1992). This process is not only slow, but it also does

not guarantee convergence on a global minimum, or even

the nearest local minimum, because minimization always

progresses along a single parameter axis at a time. We

have worked towards replacing the SPF currently implemented in shape with a modified Square Root Information Filter (SRIF), as outlined in section 3.1.

3. GAUSS-NEWTON ROUTINE

discussing the Gauss-Newton Routine (GNR), to which

SRIF is related. A classical GNR minimizes the weighted

residuals between a model and data with Gaussian noise

by determining the direction in parameter space in which

2 is decreasing fastest. Specifically, suppose one has a

set of n observables, ~z, with weights W , and a model

function m(~

~ x), where ~x is an m-dimensional parameter vector. Assuming independent data points with

Gaussian-distributed errors, the probability of the model

matching the data is given by

1 ~| ~

p(m(~

~ x) | ~z) p(~z | m(~

~ x)) exp( R

W R),

2

~ = ~z m(~

where R

~ x). Therefore maximizing the model

probability is the same as minimizing the value

~ | W R.

~

2 (~x) = R

~ and minimizing 2 (~x)

Perturbing ~x by some amount, x,

~

over x yields

~ = A| W R,

(A| W A)x

where

A=

~

R

.

~x

~ = (A| W A)1 A| W R

x

(1)

this process is repeated multiple times until the change

in 2 from one iteration to the next has passed below

a fiducial fraction. This process is equivalent to solving

the weighted normal equations.

Implementing an Improved Algorithm for Asteroid Shape Reconstruction using Radar Images 3

Table 1

Run statistics for SPF and SRIF test fits, using simulated data. These test fits correspond to the plots in figure 3

Model

Sphere

Oblate ell.

Prolate ell.

Sphere

Oblate ell.

Prolate ell.

Sphere

Oblate ell.

Prolate ell.

2red,initial

#1

#1

#1

#2

#2

#2

#3

#3

#3

5.11

4.95

3.22

6.31

4.37

2.72

7.13

4.77

2.59

2red,f inal

SPF

LM SRIF

1.60 1.72

1.01

2.57 2.26

1.83

1.38 2.40

1.10

2.06 1.98

1.00

1.46 1.55

1.08

1.45 1.65

1.44

2.66 1.80

1.02

2.30 2.10

1.00

1.22 1.46

1.04

inverse of the matrix (A| W A). This matrix has m2 elements and thus can be quite large for a model with many

parameters. In addition, numerical stability can be a serious issue (A| W A) may be ill-conditioned, and thus

taking the inverse can result in numerical errors.

For example (G. J. Bierman 1977), consider the case

when

!

1 1

A= 1 1

1

1

and

accurate, and faster than the algorithm currently used

in shape. SRIF is also more numerically stable (and, in

some cases faster) than a standard Gauss-Newton routine. Our implementation of SRIF includes some changes

to the original algorithm, which will be discussed in section 4.

The Square Root Information Filter (SRIF) gets

around the problems inherent in a classical GNR by utilizing matrix square roots and Householder operations

(see G. J. Bierman (1977), pg. 59) to increase the numerical stability when determining ~x. Instead of minimizing 2 , SRIF minimizes

1

1

~

Q = (2 ) 2 = ||W 2 R||.

W = I.

Then

3 2 + 2

3 2

(A| W A) =

3 2

3 2 + 2

3 2 3 2

= 3 2 3 2 ,

Runtime (hours)

SPF

LM SRIF

12.0

8.2

4.2

12.0

6.4

4.9

12.0

9.0

11.9

12.0

4.1

3.7

12.0

2.8

11.9

12.0

2.9

6.3

12.0 11.5

6.7

12.0

4.8

6.2

12.0

4.5

6.8

root of the machine precision. This matrix is singular,

and thus (A| W A)1 cannot be computed. This problem is particularly insidious because matrix singularity

in higher dimensions can be difficult to detect.

One way to quantify this problem is by using the condition number . For a matrix M ,

0

~

troduced to the parameter vector ~x, and Q = Q(~x + x)

is minimized over this change.

Q0 is smallest when

1

1

~

~

~ x + x)||

~ x) + Ax)||

||W 2 R(~

||W 2 (R(~

is minimized.

1

A matrix H is defined such that HW 2 A is upper triangular. H is orthogonal and can be generated by the

product of m Householder operation matrices. Note that

the orthogonality of H guarantees that

1

(M ) ||M ||,

~

~ x) + W 2 Ax||

= ||W 2 R(~

to a better conditioned matrix M , i.e., M is less likely

to be singular. Because

(A| W A) ||A||2 ,

the classical GNR magnifies potential numerical instabilities.

Finally, for problems involving a very large number of

observations and model parameters, even the calculation

of (A| W A) is non-trivial, as this matrix multiplication

scales like n2 m. The number of observations needed for

an asteroid shape reconstruction typically number in the

millions, with potentially 102 105 free parameters.

3.1. Square Root Information Filter

The Square Root Information Filter (SRIF) was originally developed by Bierman in 1977 (G. J. Bierman

(1977), Lawson (1995)). The algorithm minimizes 2 for

time series data with Gaussian errors, and is inspired by

~ = ||H(W 2 R(~

~

~ x) + W 2 Ax||

~ x) + W 2 Ax)||

||W 2 R(~

1

~

~ x) + HW 2 Ax||

= ||HW 2 R(~

1

0

1

A

2

HW A = Z

where A0 is an m m upper-triangular matrix, and Z is

the (n m) m zero-matrix . Then rewriting

~0

1

~ x) = Rx

HW 2 R(~

R~z0

where Rx0 and Rz0 are m 1 and (n m) 1 arrays,

respectively, yields

~

~

R~x0 + A0 x

R~x0 + A0 x

0

Q = ||

|| = ||

||

~

R~z0

R~z0 + Z x

This is clearly minimized over x when

~

R~x0 = A0 x

a)

b)

Figure 2. a) The initial shape, a prolate ellipsoid, before any of the spherical harmonic parameters have been changed.

b) A perturbed prolate ellipsoid. This shape will serve as one of the test objects to be fitted for, with results given in figure 3.

or

~ = A01 R~0 .

x

x

, where

(2)

calculated, and singularity can be trivially detected. Furthermore, the condition number (A) ||A||, as opposed

to ||A||2 in the GNR case.

Finally, note that (A| W A) is never calculated, which,

as mentioned in section 3 is a computationally intensive

calculation.

4. ADDITIONS TO SRIF

4.1. Optimizations

We have implemented two main optimizations to the

standard SRIF. An inherent downside to the SRIF is

that the number of operations necessary to generate the

Householder matrix H grows as m2 (n m). Our implementation of the SRIF runs the matrix triangularization simultaneously on multiple cores, which results in a

significant speed-up. This can be done in a thread-safe

manner because each Householder operation functions on

a column-by-column basis.

The second addition we made to the standard SRIF

is the inclusion of a secondary 2 minimization for the

~ So

scaling of x.

~

Q00 = Q(~x + x)

is minimized. This minimization is done with a grid

search over 6 decades. The additional minimization adds

a trivial additional computation cost to the overall minimization of 2 , but allows for faster convergence, and the

possibility of skipping over local minima in the 2 -space.

4.2. Penalty functions

The SPF routine can currently fit models to data while

taking into account a suite of penalty functions, to ensure that the models that are generated are physical.

In a way, these penalty functions serve to make the fit

operate in a more global context there may be a local minimum in 2 -space towards which the fitting algorithm would want to tend, but that minimum can be

ruled out a priori thanks to physical limitations. These

penalty functions include limits on ellipsoid axis ratios,

constraints to surface concavities, limits on the model

center of mass distance from the image center, as well as

others. We have implemented these penalty functions in

the SRIF framework. Specifically, this has been accomplished by redefining the residual vector as

~

~ 00 = ~z m

R

p~

w

p1 w1

..

p~w =

.

pN wN

for which {pi } , {wi } are the set of penalty functions and

penalty weights, respectively, and

R~00

~x

. The algorithm then progresses as described in sec~ replaced with R

~ 00 and A00 replacing A0 .

tion 3.1, with R

A00 =

5. RESULTS

types of data. First, we generated simple spherical harmonic shapes and simulated images with Gaussian noise.

Second, we used existing shape models of asteroids and

simulated images with 2 -distributed errors. Third, we

used an actual asteroid radar data set. In all cases, we fit

the images to recover the shapes using SRIF, SPF, and

a third-party Levenberg-Marquardt algorithm (LM).

5.1. Simulated data with generated shapes

shape (either spherical, oblate ellipsoid, or prolate ellispoid), and randomly perturbing the spherical harmonic representation of this shape to get a new, nontrivial object. Simulated images in range-Doppler space

were then taken of this object, and these images were fit

for using the three aforementioned algorithms. This test

serves as a good absolute test of a fitting method, because a solution is guaranteed to exist within the framework used (namely, a spherical harmonic representation).

Figure 2 shows an example of the resulting shape when

starting with a prolate ellipsoid. Three randomly generated objects were created for each of the three basic

shapes, for a total of nine test cases (see Table 1).

For each test case, we then generated between 20 and

30 simulated radar images and added Gaussian noise

such that the signal-to-noise ratio fell in the range 50-100.

These images were used to attempt to reconstruct the

perturbed shape, with the original basic shape (sphere,

prolate ellipsoid, or oblate ellipsoid) given as the initial

condition. This process was repeated for each of the nine

test cases.

The three fitting algorithms shared starting conditions

for each test. For each fit, the models comprised 121 free

parameters, and the simulated images contained 2.4 million data points. Stopping criteria were also normalized

Implementing an Improved Algorithm for Asteroid Shape Reconstruction using Radar Images 5

Table 2

Run statistics for SPF and SRIF fits for 2000 ET70 data.

Model

2000 ET70: Ellipsoid

2000 ET70: Sph. Harm.

2initial

3.7

2.4

finished if the chi-squared statistic had not changed to

within three significant digits after one hour, or twelve

hours had passed since the fit began, whichever occurred

first. All times are clock time.

The results of these tests (figure 3) indicate that SRIF

consistently performs better than the currently-used SPF

algorithm. In addition, SRIF appears to ultimately converge on a lower chi-squared than LM, even for tests

where LM is faster during the beginning of the fit. SRIF

also converged on a reduced chi-squared of less than 1.1

(indicating a reasonable approximation of the correct

model parameters had been found) in seven out of the

nine tests, while neither SPF nor LM were able to do so

within the twelve-hour timeframe.

5.2. Simulated data with real shapes

shapes. These were asteroids whose shapes had been

previously calculated and catalogued. Three such objects

were tested - Itokawa, 1999 KW4, and 2000 ET70. As

opposed to the previous set of tests, these objects are

not guaranteed to be well approximated with a spherical

harmonic representation. However, a best-fit spherical

harmonic representation can still be found. The results

of these tests are illustrated in figure 4.

For this set of images we used 2 -distributed errors,

which is the correct noise model for individual images of

radar echo power. When multiple images are summed,

one can often rely on the fact that errors approach normality by the central limit theorem, hence the choice of

Gaussian noise for the first set of images.

5.3. Real data: 2000 ET70

the asteroid 2000 ET70 (Naidu et al. 2013). shape was

run initially with an ellipsoid model. The starting conditions for the this model were such that the ellipsoid axes

were all equal (figure 5a). The best fit ellipsoid model

(figure 5b) was then converted into a spherical harmonic

model with 122 model components, which was then fit

again to the data. This process resulted in a final spherical harmonic model (figure 5c) for the asteroid with a

2red of 2.1.

For the first stage, SRIF fit a substantially better ellipsoid than SPF did, although it took about 6 times

longer (Table 2). For the second stage, SRIF converged

on a spherical harmonics model that is marginally superior to SPF, but it took 100 times longer. The longer

time to convergence is likely due to the fact that the

best-fit ellipsoid for 2000 ET70 is a very close approximation to the best-fit spherical harmonic representation.

In this situation, SPF has a distinct advantage because it

fits one parameter at a time and can quickly identify and

skip parameters that do not affect the solution. SRIF, on

the other hand, will always go through the same number

2f inal

SPF SRIF

2.8

2.4

2.12

2.10

Runtime (hours)

SPF

SRIF

0.02

0.129

3.83

376.30

iteration.

6. FUTURE CHANGES

performance, but additional changes can still be made to

allow shape to function optimally with real-world data.

6.1. Global vs local variable partitioning

The data that are fit with shape are typically split into

sets, with each set corresponding to a different observing

run, geometry, or observing setup (for the same object).

Correspondingly, the models that are fit to these data

have both local and global variables, meaning there are

(local) parameters that are tied to the set, and (global)

parameters that are tied to the object itself. For example, shape parameters are global, but parameters that

correct for the antenna temperature are date-specific,

and are thus local. Intelligent grouping of local and

global parameters can potentially lead to a substantial

computation time decrease.

6.2. Additional fitting methods

Tests that we have run with the simulated and real

data have indicated that the 2 -space for shape-models

is not smooth. Figure 6 shows a two-dimensional slice of

the 2 -space for a spherical harmonic model against 2000

ET70 data. The multi-valleyed nature of this space may

explain why SPF can result in a better fit to the data

than SRIF, as SPF can miss the nearest local minimum,

and fall into a farther, deeper minimum. In light of this,

global fitting mechanisms such as simulated annealing

or Markov Chain Monte Carlo may be better suited for

this problem. These methods can be supplemented by

a gradient descent method like SRIF. In fact, utilizing a

hybrid of these methods may prove to be the optimal solution for this class of problem. Until such methods are

implemented, convergence on a global minimum will be

dependent on a good choice of starting conditions, and

identifying such starting conditions is not always practical.

6.3. Additional shape representations

There are serious drawbacks to using spherical harmonics to represent shapes. Many asteroid shapes are

poorly approximated by spherical harmonics, and there

are entire classes of shapes that can not be described at

all. Traditionally, this problem has been solved by the

use of vertex models, but these shape representations

typically involve a large number of parameters. We are

currently looking into new representation methods, some

of which may allow for a greater range of shapes, while

at the same time cutting down on the number of free

parameters.

Figure 3. Results of three fitting algorithms (Sequential Parameter Fit, Levenberg-Marquardt, and Square-Root Information Filter) with

three artificial shapes (perturbed versions of a sphere, oblate ellipsoid, and prolate ellipsoid). Bold lines indicate fits which converged to a

2red < 1.1. Dashed lines indicate the assumed future state for fits that had converged on a solution before the 12-hour time frame.

Figure 4. Results comparing SRIF, LM and SPF operating on real asteroid shapes with simulated 2 -distributed errors. Dashed lines

indicate the assumed future state for fits that had converged on a solution before the 12-hour time frame. Note that the solution arrived

at by SPF for 1999 KW4 was a non-physical, pebble-sized asteroid.

Implementing an Improved Algorithm for Asteroid Shape Reconstruction using Radar Images 7

a)

b)

c)

Figure 5.

a) The starting condition shape for the ellipsoid model fit for 2000 ET70. b) The best fit ellipsoid for 2000 ET70. This ellipsoid is converted

into a spherical harmonic representation and then used to seed the next stage of the fit. c) The final best fit spherical harmonic model for

2000 ET70.

Figure 6. A two-dimensional slice of the 2 space for fitting shape models to radar data. This contour map represents 2 for a spherical

harmonic model with all parameters fixed except two of the elements of the primary coefficient matrix. Note that the blue regions indicate

low 2 , and that there are several of these regions for a derivative-based optimizer to fall towards, depending on the initial set of starting

conditions.

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