Practical Statistics for Astronomers

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Cambridge University Press, Apr 26, 2012 - Mathematics - 353 pages
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Astronomy needs statistical methods to interpret data, but statistics is a many-faceted subject that is difficult for non-specialists to access. This handbook helps astronomers analyze the complex data and models of modern astronomy. This Second Edition has been revised to feature many more examples using Monte Carlo simulations, and now also includes Bayesian inference, Bayes factors and Markov chain Monte Carlo integration. Chapters cover basic probability, correlation analysis, hypothesis testing, Bayesian modelling, time series analysis, luminosity functions and clustering. Exercises at the end of each chapter guide readers through the techniques and tests necessary for most observational investigations. The data tables, solutions to problems, and other resources are available online at www.cambridge.org/9780521732499. Bringing together the most relevant statistical and probabilistic techniques for use in observational astronomy, this handbook is a practical manual for advanced undergraduate and graduate students and professional astronomers.
  

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Contents

1 Decision
1
2 Probability
20
3 Statistics and expectations
55
4 Correlation and association
71
5 Hypothesis testing
92
basics
126
advanced topics
151
8 Detection and surveys
182
9 Sequential data 1D statistics
230
10 Statistics of largescale structure
262
statistics and our Universe
291
The literature
316
Statistical tables
321
References
335
Index
347
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About the author (2012)

J. V. Wall is Adjunct Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of British Columbia and Visiting Professor at the University of Oxford, UK.

C. R. Jenkins is a Research Scientist in Earth Sciences and Resource Engineering at the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), Australia.

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