The AAVSO Photoelectric Photometry Program in Its Scientific and Socio-Historic Context
John R. Percy
Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, University of Toronto, Toronto ON M5S 3H4, Canada
Presented at the 100th Spring Meeting of the AAVSO, May 22, 2011; received November 30, 2011; accepted December 9, 2011
In this paper, I review the work of the AAVSO in the area of photoelectric photometry (PEP). This work was influenced by several trends: in science, in technology, and in the sociology of amateur astronomy. Through the 1980s, the AAVSO photoelectric photometry program competed with other such programs and, in recent years, has been overshadowed by CCD photometry programs. Nevertheless, the AAVSO PEP program has, through careful organization, motivation, and feedback, produced extensive scientific results, and can continue to do so. In the case of my own research, AAVSO PEP observations have also contributed significantly to the education of my students.