Some of the best opportunities for contributing to astronomical research come through the AAVSO's Observing Campaigns, which are observing projects requested by individual researchers with a specific goal in mind. Some Campaigns are designed to last for a long time, and the results aren't known until well after the campaign concludes. But some campaigns pay off immediately. Our campaign on the bright star b Persei is an example of the latter, with a handful of AAVSO observers getting exactly the right data, at the right time, right away!
January 12, 2015: Photometry by P. Benni (AAVSO observer code BPAD; Massachusetts, United States), D. Collins (CDK; North Carolina, United States), F. Campos (CFRA; Catalunya, Spain), and F. Melillo (MFR; New York, United States) suggest that b Persei may have entered eclipse around JD 2457033.6 (2015 January 11.1 UT). Time-series photometric observations of this bright star are urgently requested beginning immediately, and continuing for the next two weeks (through at least 2015 January 26 UT) and possibly beyond.
February 6, 2013: According to photometry provided by Don Collins (CDK, Swannanoa, NC), the eclipse in the b Per system (HD 26961), predicted for around 2013 January 25, is underway now and began February 4-5. Photometry - multicolor if possible - is urgently needed now to cover the rest of this eclipse, which may last for up to four days altogether, and see post-eclipse behavior of the system.
January 4, 2013: Dr. Bob Zavala (U.S. Naval Observatory, Flagstaff) has requested AAVSO assistance in obtaining multicolor photometry of the bright triple system b Per in order to prepare for and detect a possible eclipse of the AB components by the C component predicted for 2013 January 23. At 4.5V, b Per, which is also a radio source, is an excellent target for photoelectric photometrists and DSLR observers.