Monday, November 15, was a busy day at the AAVSO. The National Science Foundation had two deadlines for funding programs. One is the annual deadline for projects relating to astronomy research. The other is an annual deadline for projects involving empirical science education research. The NSF is funded by the US taxpayer. It's main role is to fund research in science, technology, engineering, and math disciplines (plus minor excursions into a few others such as cognitive science). The only major exception is health and human biology, which is mainly funded by the National Institute of Health. Continue Reading
I just returned from a week at Cerro Tololo InterAmerican Observatory, better known as CTIO. The primary reason for the trip was to install and test APASS, but mountain observatories are fun for many reasons! Continue Reading
Did you know that there is an easy-to-use tool available to you right now that lets you create custom light curves from AAVSO data and helps you to analyze that data in multiple ways? Well there is, and its called VStar. To get it, simply click the "Data" tab at the top of this page, then under "Analysis" on the dropdown menu you will find VStar as one of the choices. From this page you can get the download (no installation required) and read a bit more about how it works and what resources are available to you. Continue Reading
Tom Smith was down at Cerro Tololo instead of at the Fall meeting, installing the APASS system. It is now up and running! Continue Reading
The AAVSO 99th Fall Meeting is well underway at the Hilton hotel in Woburn, MA! We have had lots of great presentations so far including a workshop by Sara Beck, invited talks by Doug Welch and Tim Slater and many interesting contributed talks. A special award was presented to retiring SID section leader, Michael Hill honoring his 10 years of service in this role. We also had chance to enjoy the recent rennovations at AAVSO HQ last night as we hosted a dinner in the conference room at Headquarters. We are looking forward to the banquet this evening Continue Reading
Hi, all. My dissertation defense is November 1 at 4:30pm eastern (21:30UT) at Tufts University. It is about an education research study of AAVSO's Citizen Sky project. Doc will attempt to broadcast it live via U-Stream. There will be audio, video and you can even ask me questions. Click below for more info. Continue Reading
Observations of TT Ari seem to be showing a partial recovery from its deep minimum of 2008-2009, but this star still hasn't quite reached its normal high state yet. Researchers also still haven't figured out why it's doing what it's doing, but your observations are going to help solve the puzzle. Continue Reading
…Star Party, that is. On the weekend of October 8 – 10, 2010, I just happened to be in the right place at the right time which means that I was in Birr, County Offaly, Ireland for a wonderful event called “The Whirlpool Star Party”. Now in its 24th year (not counting a 1-year break), this gathering of astronomers, both professional and amateur, from all over Ireland, the UK, and elsewhere, features informative talks, stargazing and of course, social gatherings.
A year ago, the Bright Star Monitor (BSM) started taking images at Tom Krajci's Astrokolkhoz observatory in New Mexico. Over 87,000 images later, its future looks bright!
The AAVSO's archive of times of maxima and minima of long period variables is almost as old as the AAVSO itself, and we are giving these data new life by re-releasing them to the community in electronic form after a long hiatus. Continue Reading