Folks on the forum may find this paper of interest, which appeared on the astro-ph preprint server this evening:
Utilizing Small Telescopes Operated by Citizen Scientists for Transiting Exoplanet Follow-up
Zellem et al, accepted for PASP
This includes Dennis Conti as co-author. The transit runs are impressive, since I can hardly do better with much larger apertures.
Very interesting. I see that Pat Boyce is part of this effort as well as Conti.I presume this paper is a proof of concept in front for a grant application. I will be interested to see how this project develops. Swarm of 6" scopes? A few scopes, robotic automation, lots of targets, amateurs given specific targets to analyze on a regular basis? (The AAVSonet model). I suspect something like AAVSOnet. That way image quality can be controlled and observers can be monitored and vetted. Otherwise its the wild west.
Hi all- I'm Rob, the first author of the paper that was posted above. We wrote this paper as it naturally came out of a white paper I was writing ~1 year ago and I wanted to showcase all of the awesome work that small telescopes can contribute to transiting exoplanets. Our project is called Exoplanet Watch (https://exoplanets.nasa.gov/exoplanet-watch/). Right now, we are in our beta testing phase and are hoping to officially launch in September 2020. We have been working with Dennis Conti and Stella Kafka on collaborating with the AAVSO Exoplanet Section and they have graciously offered us to use their Database to help our efforts.
If you are interested in joining, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We have our own data reduction pipeline called EXOTIC (github.com/rzellem/EXOTIC) and are looking for feedback on testing it as well. However, you are more than welcome to use whatever data reduction tools you want (as long as you adhere to the requirements of the AAVSO Exoplanet Database format).
Looking forward to working with all of you!