RESEARCH COLLABORATIONS OUTSIDE LOWELL
A variety of collaborations are available throughout the astronomical community. Below, you will find a partial summary of other research amateurs can perform and a web link to the support group for that research
- The American Associate of Variable Star Observers (AAVSO) is an international non-profit organization of variable star observers whose mission is to observe and analyze variable stars, to collect and archive observations for worldwide access, to forge strong collaborations between amateur and professional astronomers, and to promote scientific research and education using variable star data.
- The International Occultation Timing Association (IOTA) is an organization whose mission is to encourage and facilitate the observation of occultations and eclipses, to provide predictions for grazing occultations of stars by the Moon, to provide predictions for occultations of stars by asteroids and planets, to provide information on observing equipment and techniques, to report to our members about observations made, and to determine shapes and sizes of minor planets and comets through timing of occultations of stars by these objects.
- The Amateur Sky Survey (TASS) is a project whose purpose is building astronomical cameras and distributing them to sites around the world. The goal is to study bright objects across large sections of the sky.
- Pulsar Search Collaboratory (PSC) partners the National Radio Astronomy Observatory with West Virginia University to provide students with opportunities to learn 21st Century Skills while conducting world class research in pulsar astronomy. PSC students join an international team of scientists analyzing more than 130 Terabytes of data collected by the Robert C. Byrd Green Bank Telescope for the purpose of discovering new pulsars! This project might be more suitable for teachers leading a group of students but researchers may be able to apply directly.
- Association of Lunar & Planetary Observers (ALPO) is a medium for advancing and conducting astronomical work by both professional and amateur astronomers who share an interest in Solar System observations. ALPO is an international group of researchers that study the Sun, Moon, planets, asteroids, meteors, and comets. Its goals are to stimulate, coordinate, and generally promote the study of these bodies using methods and instruments that are available within the communities of both amateur and professional astronomers.
- Exosolar Planet Hunting TransitSearch.org Many amateur astronomers own telescopes which, when properly configured, are capable of reliably detecting the periodic dimming that occurs when a close-in giant planet passes in front of its parent star as seen from Earth. This technique has been used by amateurs worldwide to detect planetary transits. This organization helps with equipment design, observing technique, target selection, and observation reporting.
- MicroLensingFollow-Up Network (MicroFUN) This opportunity is an informal consortium of observers dedicated to photometric monitoring of interesting microlensing events in the Galactic Bulge. The primary scientific objective is to observe those high-magnification microlensing events that offer the greatest potential for detecting extra-solar planets orbiting the lensing star. The network is organized from Ohio State University.
- Society for Astronomical Sciences (SAS) is a group of amateur and professional astronomers dedicated to doing astronomical research spanning a wide range of fields, from asteroids, to variable stars, to cataclysmic stars, and almost anything between or beyond. Its mission is to foster interest and participation in astronomical research by backyard astronomers and to encourage publication in recognized journals.
- Center for Backyard Astrophysics (CBA) is a global network of small telescopes dedicated to photometry of cataclysmic variables (CVs). The CBA web site provides a full set of services to aid amateur astronomers with their observations of CVs.
- Amateur astronomers have many other research projects in which they can participate. You can find a large sample of them here.
Steve Leshin made this photograph of galaxies NGC 5965 and NGC 5963 He used image addition and multiple filters to get the very deep image with colors. Used with permission.