IFAS Advanced Observing Progam

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IFAS Advanced Observing Progam. What is the AOP?. An IFAS approved program for all amateur astronomers Program open to all Location Equipment Knowledge and experience Does not necessarily entail advanced astronomy
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IFAS Advanced Observing ProgamWhat is the AOP?
  • An IFAS approved program for all amateur astronomers
  • Program open to all
  • Location
  • Equipment
  • Knowledge and experience
  • Does not necessarily entail advanced astronomy
  • Currently encompasses eight main modules – covering deep sky and solar system
  • Credits SN2005EP: Dave McDonald; Lunar fly-by: Anthony Ayiomamitis; Solar: Michael O’Connell; Planets: Dave LillisWhat skills are required?
  • The AOP will need skills from all areas
  • Why is it needed?
  • IFAS is the co-ordinating body for Irish clubs and societies
  • There is only one Irish programs catering for amateur astronomers (beyond beginner’s level) – the IAS VSOP
  • Amateur astronomers can and do contribute data to professional programs and educational establishments
  • When will it begin?
  • The AOP will commence with one or two modules by the end of 2006
  • These modules will be fully resourced and documented
  • Each module will need volunteers with widely varying skills and spare time
  • Further modules will be rolled out at later dates
  • CommunicationTeam WorkQuality controlDocumentationReportingDATACollectionAnalysisHow will the AOP work?
  • Key elements of the program are:
  • More why’s…
  • Provide a co-ordinated program for intermediate/advanced amateurs
  • Provide quality science data to professional astronomers and bodies (including educational establishments)
  • Foster mutually beneficial links
  • Disseminate techniques and procedures
  • Co-ordination
  • The AOP will be co-ordinated by a team
  • Modules will be co-ordinated by a lead
  • Each module lead will co-ordinate their resources (including people) to maximise volunteer participation
  • The AOP team will report progress to all volunteers and to IFAS at regular intervals
  • Cost
  • There is currently no individual cost associated with taking part
  • Where possible, funding will be sought
  • As the program progresses, funding will be reviewed
  • Science Data
  • All science data will be credited to all contributing members
  • Initial Modules
  • Supernova Search
  • Meteor shower data
  • SN2005ep Discovery ImageCourtesy Puckett/PeoplesSN2005ep Confirmation ImageCourtesy McDonaldSupernova SearchBasic steps
  • Image a galaxy
  • Compare to a previous image
  • If there’s anything ‘new’, take a confirmation image with another setup
  • If confirmed, report to the IAU
  • Imaging
  • Dozens of CCD images will need to be taken and inspected for SN candidates
  • Images will need to be checked for QC and then blinked
  • Software can be used
  • Comparison images may be retrieved via the Internet (e.g., the Digital Sky Survey)
  • Always first compare CCD images with own reference images before moving on to professional exposures
  • At Kingsland Observatory J62 there is a repository already of over 1000 images of relevant galaxies, these can be used as a reference.
  • This resource will have saved the new AOP a lot of time in creating master images, especially in Irish weather conditions.
  • In addition, CelbridgeObservatory, J65 has already added 50 master images. This is a total of 1050 master images of galaxies.
  • Image taken by Dave McDonald of a cluster of galaxies. This strategy of taking a number of galaxies at the faintest possible magnitude saves lots of time in imaging individual galaxiesEquipmentScience
  • We don’t know everything about SN’s
  • A SN search aims to find SN’s shortly after they appear
  • Professionals can then track the SN over its cycle and gain a better understanding
  • SN discoveries and follow-up have helped conclude the universe is expanding
  • Resources
  • We need telescopes and imagers
  • We need QC folks and blinkers
  • We need checkers and reporters
  • We need software gurus and web savvy folks
  • Meteor ZHR’s
  • Meteor showers will be observed
  • Log sheets to be completed by all observers
  • Data will be submitted to BAA and/or IAU
  • All you need is a pair of eyes, warm clothes and good dark site!
  • Related Search
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