Searching for Alerts

ANTARES has indexed its alert database using ElasticSearch so that the community can perform quick searches.

The search module of the ANTARES client provides functionality for searching the ANTARES ElasticSearch database.

Writing ElasticSearch queries is beyond the scope of this documentation but visit the instructions on the ANTARES Advanced Search page for a short introduction.

Let’s say that we are interested in finding all of the alerts with:

  • A right ascension of approximately 110 degrees (+- 0.1 degree)

  • A ZTF real/bogus score greater than 0.9

We represent this query in Python as follows:

query = {
    "query": {
        "bool": {
            "must": [
                    "range": {
                        "ra": {
                            "gte": 109.9,
                            "lte": 110.1,
                    "range": {
                        "properties.ztf_rb": {
                            "gte": 0.9,

And can search through the ANTARES database for matching alerts:

from import search
result_set = search(query)

We can also download the result set as a compressed/uncompressed (gzipped) .json or .csv file:

from import download
result_set = download(query, "results.csv", format="csv", decompress=True)
result_set = download(query, "results.csv.gz", format="csv", decompress=False)
result_set = download(query, "results.json", format="json", decompress=True)
result_set = download(query, "results.json.gz", format="json", decompress=False)

Retrieving these result sets can take a long time, depending on their size. Both the download and search functions accept a progress_callback function as a keyword argument. This function is called when the query is submitted to the server and frequently as the query is processed and a response prepared. This callback is always called with a search.JobStatus as its first argument; it should also handle arbitrary keyword arguments, even if you don’t do anything with them. A simple example to print the status of the job and to demonstrate what keyword arguments are passed to the callback at different stages of the job’s life:

def progress_callback(status, **kwargs):
    print("Search status: {}; Received kwargs: {}".format(status, kwargs))

result_set = search(query, progress_callback=progress_callback)