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Paper: NED for a New Era
Volume: 376, Astronomical Data Analysis Software and Systems XVI
Page: 153
Authors: Mazzarella, J.M.; the NED Team
Abstract: The NASA/IPAC Extragalactic Database (NED1) is a thematic, on-line research facility that supports scientists, educators, space missions, and observatories in planning, data analysis, discovery, and publication of research on extragalactic objects. NEDís ongoing mission is to provide a comprehensive and easy-to-use, multi-wavelength fusion of fundamental data for all known (cataloged and published) objects beyond the Milky Way. The contents and services span the entire spectrum from gamma rays through radio frequencies, and they are continuously updated to reflect the current literature and releases of large-scale sky survey catalogs. After a brief overview of NEDís primary features, we review current developments that are vastly extending the content and capabilities of NED for our modern era of research involving very large, multidimensional, multi-wavelength data sets in the context of an interoperable, global Virtual Observatory. We then illustrate how researchers can program various types of queries to NED and retrieve machine readable tabular output using modern programming/scripting languages, and review how developers around the world are integrating content from NED Web services into various applications. We close with a discussion of the challenges for managing increasingly large and diverse data sets while maintaining quality in NED operations, which are centered around the core activity of establishing cross-identifications and relating information from thousands of journal articles and catalogs containing observations of hundreds of millions of extragalactic objects and candidates.
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