The citizen science project HOYS-CAPS (Hunting for Outbursting Young Stars with the Centre for Astrophysics and Planetary Science) is engaging with amateur astronomers to study the formation of stars and planets.
Dr Dirk Froebrich tells us a bit more about the project and it’s continued success:
“The project has now been running for almost 5 years with ever increasing success and participation – there are now 65 participants from 10 different countries. In total we have collected over 11000 images with more than 80 million reliable brightness measurements of stars. The entirety of the data corresponds to 550 hours of exposure time on a 1m diameter telescope.
“A large part of the project are presentations about the science goals at amateur society meetings across the entire UK, e.g. from Cornwall to Bangor, Great Yarmouth and Inverness. During our 33rd presentation last week at the Wycombe Astronomical Society we had our 1000th audience member present – Nick – who was presented with an SPS travel mug.
“The presentations are given by myself and Dr Alexander Scholz (University of St Andrews – who gives the talks in Scotland). A further 8 presentations at amateur societies are scheduled over the coming months, as well as several presentations and professional and amateur conferences in the UK and Belgium. The presenters have so far travelled about 13700km – which is the equivalent to drive from Canterbury in a straight line to Antarctica or Western Australia.”
Congratulations to Dirk, and all those involved, for the continued success of this exciting and engaging project.