There are hints in recent visual observations of a decline in brightness for epsilon Aurigae. In this walk through, learn how to read data and the light curve to make your own decision. What do you think? "Is it real, or is it Memorex?"
Up until this point the Citizen Sky project has been operating with preliminary funding approval from the National Science Foundation (NSF.) In recent weeks we have been dealing with the last bits of "red tape" in the official approval process. Around lunchtime today we received word from the NSF that the final stages of processing have been completed and that the Citizen Sky grant has been officially awarded!
We are very excited to continue our progress on the Citizen Sky Project with the official support of the National Science Foundation!Read more
Several observers are reporting V = 3.00 in mid-August even though predictions that eclipse started in early August. Reviewing the past light curves indicates that ingress may have a slow and then a faster phase: in 1982 it took nearly 50 days to drop 0.2 mag, and then another 100 days to drop another 0.6 mags, visually. Translated to 2009, it may be late September before the star reaches eta Aur's brightness (~3.2). Patience.
You can now submit your PEP, CCD, and DLSR observations via the Citizen Sky website. Simply click on "Submit" and "Non-Visual" under the Data tab to access the non-visual submission form.
Submitting data via the Citizen Sky website instantly and permanently archives your data in the AAVSO International Database (AID.) Data from the AID are available to anyone at anytime and are frequently used in major research projects. So in effect if you submit your data to Citizen Sky they become available to any researcher out there who would like to use them!Read more
Citizen Sky participants can now subscibe to email notifications of forum and blog posts.
You can add subscriptions by clicking on "My profile" in your personal Menu (on the right side of the page) and then clicking on the "Notifications" tab within your profile. You can create subscriptions based on a particular thread, content type, or author. In addition you can specify how frequently you would like to receive email notifications. You can also add subscriptions by following the links at the bottom of any blog or forum post.Read more
Dr. Bob's recent post makes one thing perfectly clear: Now is the time to start observing! The eclipse can start any day now and you'll want to get your baseline data in now. Epsilon Aurigae rises around 1am. Most so-called "normal" people will be sleeping, so that makes your observation even more valuable since we will have such little data. You wanted to be a real astronomer, here is your chance. You gotta sacrifice some Zzzz's like all astronomers,Read more
The Citizen Sky Workshop I in Chicago last week went well. A special thanks to Rebecca Turner for doing an outstanding job on coordinating Workshop I. She is a real pro at this.
Also a big thank you to the Adler staff for helping make everything go smoothly.
Bob Stencel provided us with an excellent overview of epsilon Aurigae and even I learned a few new things. Great job Dr. Bob!
In addition to any posting on the AAVSO web site of the two Workshops I held, I will be posting the two PowerPoint Presentations on the Epsilon Aurigae Campaign web site.Read more
Adler Planetarium - what a splendid astronomical facility - our compliments to Lucy, Larry, Rebecca, Aaron and the CS/Adler gang for hosting a marvelous first Citizen Sky workshop, Aug. 4-7, 2009. Among the many meeting highlights was a report that appears to clinch the evidence for the existence of a cold disk in the system, a chance to meet with many key participants like Arne Henden, the Citizen Sky senior staff and Jeff Hopkins, Gerry Samolyk, Mike Simonsen - veteran observers, as well as meet the newer participants to the project (Hi PJ, Rhonda, Alice, Barry, Bill, Brian, Mark, Niko...). Hopefully everyone who attended came away with new contacts and ideas that will carry us far.Read more
We created a silly 6 minute video that describes epsilon Aurigae and the Citizen Sky project using diagrams made from Lite Brite pegs. Check it out and feel free to repost to other forums!Read more