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[ascl:1408.001] Imfit: A Fast, Flexible Program for Astronomical Image Fitting

Imift is an open-source astronomical image-fitting program specialized for galaxies but potentially useful for other sources, which is fast, flexible, and highly extensible. Its object-oriented design allows new types of image components (2D surface-brightness functions) to be easily written and added to the program. Image functions provided with Imfit include Sersic, exponential, and Gaussian galaxy decompositions along with Core-Sersic and broken-exponential profiles, elliptical rings, and three components that perform line-of-sight integration through 3D luminosity-density models of disks and rings seen at arbitrary inclinations.

Available minimization algorithms include Levenberg-Marquardt, Nelder-Mead simplex, and Differential Evolution, allowing trade-offs between speed and decreased sensitivity to local minima in the fit landscape. Minimization can be done using the standard chi^2 statistic (using either data or model values to estimate per-pixel Gaussian errors, or else user-supplied error images) or the Cash statistic; the latter is particularly appropriate for cases of Poisson data in the low-count regime.

The C++ source code for Imfit is available under the GNU Public License.