Skip to main content

Public Info

6 posts / 0 new
Last post
paw's picture
Public Info

HI all

I'm about to write an S&T blog piece on VSOing for the coming season. It's expected to be quarterly. If anyone has a simple observing project, campaign, or interest that may benefit from some PI, let me know. No guarantees, of course, with word limits and I'll be edited. Remember I'm a visual observer, and that's my main - not exclusive - pov.

Best. Alan

dhdeangelis's picture
Nice and interesting job!

Nice and interesting job! Congratulations.

Not that I have a project on my own, but an interesting fact that perhaps you may want to consider mentioning is that Z Cameloparladalis is since about April this year in its "dormant" mode and it could be interesting and fun to monitor it to see when it returns to its usual "recurrent outburst" mode. Z Cam has RA 8 h, and declination +73, so it is conveniently located for northern observers for much of the year, although late autumn and winter are probably best.

Good luck in your writing. Looking forward to read your column (if freely available to all readers).

Best, Hernán

jfmb's picture
Simple phase plot projects

HI Alan,

I select a handful of stars - usually EBs  and RR Lyraes - each season and monitor them as closely as possible visually to create phase plots from the 200+ or so estimates I can get. Is that of any interest to you? simple stuff, all visual..



stellakafka's picture
FO Aqr

Hello Alan,


Ah, this is really cool! Will be happy to provide information for your S&T blog piece! Is this forum the best way for us to send you info?


Here's a good one this season: we received notification the FO Aqr, an intermediate polar, has entered a low state. Low states in cataclysmic variables are not rare, except that they have not been observed in confirmed intermediate polars (this is the only one I know of). We already have an alert for observations ( but this star would be of interest to a wider audience. This is the second recorded low state for FO Aqr; the manuscript presenting AAVSO data for the first one included all 16 AAVSO observers as authors...


I hope this helps!

Best wishes - clear skies,


paw's picture
Thanks Stella

Thanks Stella

I'll use that as an example of an Alert Notice, and what they're for. Otherwise, I'm thinking of starting with some class prototypes: Mira will on the way to max over the season, and Z And will placed ok. Maybe SS Cyg. Any other ideas always appreciated. Best off the notice board, at

Best. Alan 

B.P.Vietje's picture
CCD Observations, Too?

Very good news that you will be able to keep variable star observing in front of S&T readers!  I hope this does live on as a quarterly series for years to come.

It seems to me there are at least 3 potential categories of observer/project:

  • Visual observing projects/observers
  • CCD Observing projects/observers
  • Data Mining Projects -- no original data aquisition

Starting off with fairly simple visual projects seems like a very good approach.  Then I'm wondering about not only CCD projects, but recruiting deep-sky imagers to use their equipment for doing actual science.

DSO imagers typically have high-quality equipment, well-aligned mounts, auto-guiders, and all the goodies needed to move into precise measurments with their gear, as well as patience and persistence in complex post-processing work.  They may need to consider photometric filters instead of the broader LRGB filters most currently use, but with a little training, these folks could be doing "real science" (my  bias is showing!) in no time.  The hook that I see is that precise variable star measures, and even exoplanet transits, can be done when bright Moonlight prevents them from doing most DSO imaging.

The other broad, and potentially much larger audience is the armchair astronomer with no access to dark skies or good photometry equipment.  If a few articles could highlight interesting projects they could undertake by using data available on-line, you might reach quite a few people who would be delighted to not only get a taste for data analysis, but possibly even share this with their local clubs or schools.

Many thanks for your excellent work, Alan!

Clear skies,

Brad Vietje, VBPA

Newbury, VT

Log in to post comments
AAVSO 49 Bay State Rd. Cambridge, MA 02138 617-354-0484