News and Announcements
|23 April||Final Week of Astro-April: SEVEN more online talks!||
The AASVO's Citizen Sky Project has been producing a series of online talks as a part of a month-long celebration called Astro-April.
In the last couple of weeks we have presented 5 online talks on various astronomical subjects. (If you missed any of them, recordings are posted on the main Astro-April page.) The speakers have been engaging, the questions have been thoughtful, and we've given away $250 in "door" prizes!
|23 April||Charts and Sequences Updates April 2012||
The following stars have new or revised sequences since April 9, 2012. If you observe any of these objects please update your observing charts as soon as possible.
|22 April||Special Notice #278: Bright flaring of Blazar OJ 287||
April 22, 2012: The blazar OJ 287 (Cancer) has brightened from its low optical state to its high state and is flaring. The Astronomer's Telegram #4057 (S. Zola et al., http://www.astronomerstelegram.org/?read=4057) reports very high optical activity.
|21 April||Special Notice #277: Possible Nova in Sagittarius (PNV J17452791-2305213)||
April 21, 2012: The discovery of a possible nova in Sagittarius was posted on the IAU CBAT Transient Object Confirmation Page (TOCP, http://www.cbat.eps.harvard.edu/unconf/tocp.html).
|20 April||New eJAAVSO preprint: International Observing Campaign: Photometry and Spectroscopy of P Cygni||
"New eJAAVSO preprint (ej156): International Observing Campaign: Photometry and Spectroscopy of P Cygni"
by E. Pollmann and T. Bauer
|17 April||New Survey about AAVSO Strategic Direction & Operations||
In late 2011 we issued a survey focused on the demographics and astronomical background of our membership. The results have recently been published here.
We now have a new, follow up survey prepared. This one is focused on the strategic direction of the AAVSO and the operations of the organization. The survey asks questions about the future direction of the organization, staff, officers and council and much more.
|17 April||Bob Nelson's O-C files for EBs 2012 edition||
The AAVSO is happy to provide a copy of Bob Nelson's O-C files for Eclipsing Binaries for 2012. These files can be used for observation planning, and are a valuable resource for EB observers.
Thanks once again for Bob Nelson for providing this service to the EB community.
|17 April||Solar Bulletin - Volume 68, Number 3||
The March 2012 Solar Bulletin is now available.
|16 April||Demographic Survey Results and Google Map||
In late 2011 we asked you to fill out a membership demographic survey. Participation in the survey was remarkable, with 615 people responding. An analysis of the results have recently been submitted to the JAAVSO and accepted for publication. A pre-print can be downloaded via the link below.
Also, Kevin Paxson created a Google Map of members and observers, which can be viewed via the link below:
|13 April||AAVSO Newsletter 52 is now online||
AAVSO Newsletter 52, April 2012, is now online.
|13 April||Special Notice #276: No nova in Scutum (PNV J18562170-0852300)|
|12 April||Special Notice #275: Possible Nova in Scutum = PNV J18562170-0852300||
April 12, 2012: Tom Krajci (KTC, Cloudcroft, NM) reports that a possible nova in Scutum has been announced on the IAU CBAT TOCP page (http://www.cbat.eps.harvard.edu/unconf/tocp.html) as PNV J18562170-0852300. It was discovered at unfiltered magnitude 9.7 on 2012 April 12.7954 UT by Y. Sakurai, Japan, on two 10-second exposures using a digital camera + 180-mm f/2.8 lens. Nothing was visible on an image taken 2012 Apr. 9.79 UT.
|12 April||Online talk w/Dr. Kevin Marvel, exec officer of the American Astronomical Society||
Update: The talk is completed. Videos of this talk, and the others, are available here. Also, here is a link to the policy webcast at STScI that Kevin referred to in his talk.
|12 April||Students gets first place w/DSLR photometry project|
|11 April||Cornell Lab of Ornithology Survey Request||
|11 April||AAVSO at the Cherry Springs Star Party||
Join fellow AAVSOers gathering at the Cherry Springs Star Party in Pennsylvania June 14-17, 2012!
|11 April||Alert Notice 457: Monitoring Nova Oph 2012 for multiwavelength observations||
April 10, 2012: Dr. Michael Rupen (National Radio Astronomy Observatory, Socorro, NM) has informed us that he and his colleagues of the EVLA (Expanded Very Large Array) Nova Team are carrying out a multiwavelength campaign on the Fe II-type nova Nova Oph 2012. They have triggered observations with Swift, JVLA (Jansky Very Large Array), SMA (Submillimeter Array), and high-resolution optical spectroscopy. He is requesting AAVSO observations in support.
|09 April||Join the AAVSO for half off!||
From now until April 30, 2012, new members can join the AAVSO for half off the usual price of annual dues.
Your total cost will be just $40.00. ($30.00 for 2012 dues and a one time $10.00 processing fee. This offer is only for new members.
Within a week or so (depending on where you live) you will receive your new member kit, which includes:
|06 April||Aviso Especial de AAVSO #274: Objeto variable en Centaurus = TCP J14250600-5845360||
5 de abril de 2012: John Seach (Chatsworth Island, NSW, Australia) reporta su descubrimiento de un objeto variable en Centaurus en 2012, Abr. 4.765 TU con magnitud 10.8 (6 imágenes (magnitud límite 11.5) obtenidas con una cámara DSLR con lente de 50-mm f/1.0).
|05 April||Special Notice #274: Variable Object in Centaurus = TCP J14250600-5845360||
April 5, 2012: John Seach (Chatsworth Island, NSW, Australia) reports his discovery of a variable object in Centaurus on 2012 Apr. 4.765 UT at magnitude 10.8 (6 images (limiting magnitude 11.5) obtained using a DSLR with 50-mm f/1.0 lens).
|04 April||Alert Notice 456: Monitoring of V854 Cen Requested||
April 4, 2012: Bram Ochsendorf (Leiden Observatory, Netherlands) has requested monitoring by AAVSO observers of the R CrB variable V854 Cen in support of observations to be made using the XSHOOTER instrument on the Very Large Telescope (VLT) of the European Southern Observatory's La Silla Paranal Observatory in Chile. Ochsendorf and colleagues have already observed V854 Cen at maximum and now need to observe it during a fading episode.
|04 April||VStar Version 2.13 release||
Its been more than a year and many "test versions" in the making, but a new and much improved version of VStar (Version 2.13) is now formally available. To read more about VStar and download a copy, please visit the VStar overview page and click the "Download VStar Now" button.
|03 April||Online Talk w/Sky & Telescope Editor Bob Naeye||
April 6, 2012 Update: The talk is over and went very well. We had a max of around 22 participants and the interaction with Bob was very informative. We attempted to record the talk using the built-in recording feature of the webinar software we are using (GoToWebinar by Citrix). It created a Windows Media Video (.wmv) file that plays correctly on a few Windows computers we tested on. However, when we tested it on OS X machines using a wide variety of video players we could never get it to fully work. We also attempted to upload it to YouTube and their software rejected the format as well. So we can't promise it will work on all computers. We are investigating alternatives for recording future webinars.
(There is some technical chit chat at the beginning - you may want to skip 5-10 minutes into the recording for the good stuff)
|28 March||Special Notice #273: Possible Nova in Ophiuchus = PNV J17260708-2551454||
March 28, 2012: A possible nova in Ophiuchus was announced on the IAU CBAT Transient Objects Confirmation Page (TOCP) page with the name PNV J17260708-2551454. It was discovered by H. Nishimura (Shizuoka-ken, Japan) at unfiltered magnitude 12.1 on 2012 March 25.789 UT on three frames using Canon 200-mm f/3.2 lens + Canon EOS 5D Digital Camera. Spectra suggest that the object is an Fe II-type classical nova.
|28 March||Special Notice #272: Possible Nova in Centaurus = PNV J13410800-5815470||
28 March 2012: A possible nova in Centaurus was announced on the IAU CBAT Transient Objects Confirmation Page (TOCP) page with the name PNV J13410800-5815470. It was discovered by John Seach (Chatsworth Island, NSW, Australia) at magnitude 9.2 on 2012 March 23.386 UT using a DSLR with 50 mm f/1.0 lens. Spectra indicate that the object is a classical nova.