The AAVSO Centennial may have come and gone with 2011, and the epsilon Aurigae project may be wrapping up, but Headquarters hasn't closed the files yet on these very special events! Look forward to:
- the 100th Anniversary Edition of JAAVSO, due to be published in June, and
- a special edition of JAAVSO on epsilon Aurigae, to be published in December
We're working on them!
I never got the chance to get to know David as a councilor. He got elected the same year I left council, so I was glad he accepted my request for an interview for the staff blog in October, 2011.
A simple search online will reveal David has had quite an illustrious career with honors such as the President’s Award for Excellence in Research from Saint Mary’s University, Service Award of the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada, Founding Member Special Award of the Sudbury Astronomy Club, Distinguished Alumnus of the Year award by Renison College (University of Waterloo), and dozens of papers published in distinguished journals.
Asteroid 27810 was named Daveturner (= 1993 OC2) by Carolyn Shoemaker and David Levy in his honor in November 2003. You know you've made it when they name a space rock after you!
I thought we should all get to know David a little better. So here is the interview- Continue Reading
The Variable Star Astronomy educational materials are about to get some attention at the national level. As the Lead Educator for the Chandra E/PO Office, I was asked by Ardis Herrold, the current president of the National Earth Science Teachers Association (NESTA) if Chandra would be willing to sponsor an issue of The Earth Scientist (TES) – the NESTA educator magazine that is published four times a year.
I recently had the pleasure of visiting Donn and his wife Connie in their home in Indiana. I knew I was in the right place when I pulled up and saw the vanity plate on the car in the driveway, which reads “CEPHEID”.
I set aside a sizable fraction of my time per day for about a week in late January and early February to catch up on some long-term projects, especially on many digitization projects undertaken by volunteers for the AAVSO. There's been quite a haul of archival data over the past several months, and we're getting close to making it all available to the community via the AID. Importantly, we've begun implementing our new tracking fields in the AAVSO International Database that cover digitized archival data, providing the user with the identity of
A special membership application is uncovered in the AAVSO archives. (Updated at bottom) Continue Reading
If you've ever been to AAVSO headquarters, you've probably seen a small Maksutov telescope in a clear plastic case sitting on a shelf or cabinet in the front office. Its an unassuming table top scope on a little fork mount that looks more like a curiosity than a scientific instrument. If you're like me you probably wondered for about two seconds where it came from and what the story is behind it, and then never gave it another thought. Continue Reading
I was recently lucky enough to take a ten-day trip crisscrossing Israel with forty other young adults. It was an incredible journey that included floating in the Dead Sea, winding through the streets of old Jerusalem, enjoying the Tel Aviv nightlife, and hiking up a rock plateau to Masada. However, by far the most profound experience I had was stargazing in the desert region of the Negev.
The AAVSO is not the only citizen science organization that celebrated its 100th anniversary last year. The American Meteor Society (AMS) also celebrated it's centennial. But the connection with the AAVSO goes beyond that. Continue Reading
I met Michael Koppelman for the first time sitting under a cabana at the Outrigger Hotel in Waikoloa Beach, Hawaii, at the 2002 Spring Meeting. We had a lot in common, being relatively new to the AAVSO, former professional musicians, variable star enthusiasts, married with children and working for companies we owned. We hit it off right away. Neither of us could have ever imagined that ten years later he would be in line to become president of the AAVSO and I would be on the staff of the organization we love so dearly.
I caught up with Michael recently and we talked about the AAVSO, the future and strategic planning. Continue Reading