The Cube Analysis and Rendering Tool for Astronomy

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CARTA is the Cube Analysis and Rendering Tool for Astronomy, a new visualization tool for designed for ALMA, the VLA, and the radio telescopes of the future such as the SKA.

CARTA provides three different ways of using the program. Most users will use the Desktop version of CARTA, which operates as a stand-alone application. Archives can install the Server version of CARTA that allows users to visualize data within the archive without downloading it. Finally, CARTA provides a Scripted interface that allows the application to be controlled from Python.

Why another viewer?

While there are many choices of visualization tools suitable for radio astronomy data, CARTA provides a new look at the problem by combining the rich feature set of the current CASA image viewer with the remote visualization viewer developed as part of the CyberSKA project. Remote visualization provides an opportunity to visualize large data sets in the archives of their host telescopes. By dedicating some computing resources to visualization within archives, users can explore data without downloading it. CARTA will be integrated into the ALMA and NRAO archives.

Try CARTA Desktop beta version 0.6.0

CARTA is supported for:

CARTA beta installs carry test data and are large (600 MB).

Mac Installation Instructions: We are not a trusted developer on the Mac App store (but we're nice folks). The default security settings on the Mac OS will not allow the application to run. You can either (1) go into System Settings > Security & Privacy and Allow apps downloaded from Anywhere or (2) move the application onto the Desktop, right click and select Open. The latter will give a security warning but allow the allocation to run anyways.

Linux Installation Instructions: The tgz file will expand into a directory tree structure. To run CARTA, execute the shell script carta_0.6.0/

Side Effects: The beta version of CARTA creates a directory $HOME/CARTA/ which hosts test image data and files needed to run the program.

Got Issues?: File an issue on our repository or contact Erik Rosolowsky (@low-sky).

Contribute to CARTA

CARTA is built on a plugin model and we welcome contributions that expand CARTA's capabilities. We are developing our project on github and have developer documentation available here.

The CARTA Team

The lead investigators are Erik Rosolowsky (U. Alberta), Jeff Kern (NRAO), Gregory Sivakoff (U. Alberta), and Russ Taylor (U. Cape Town, U. Western Cape, IDIA).

We are grateful for the support of several sponsoring organizations: CARTA is developed through the ALMA Development Program administered by NRAO with key contributions from CANARIE. Remote visualization relies on the PureWeb technology developed by Calgary Scientific.