Get thee outside to monitor epsilon Aurigae

International Year of Astronomy/US node adopts eps Aur for Citizen Science campaign!

AAS Austin poster 106.08 (Jan.2008):
Citizen Science for the International Year of Astronomy
Suzanne H. Jacoby1, L. Fortson2, M. Hartman3, J. C. Lochner4, A. Price5, M. J. Raddick6, R. E. Stencel7. [Affiliations: 1Large Synoptic Survey Telescope Corporation, 2Adler Planetarium, 3MIT Kavli Institute for Astrophysics and Space Research, 4CRESST/USRA/NASA-GSFC, 5Tufts University / AAVSO, 6Johns Hopkins University / SDSS, 7University of Denver.]

The IYA 2009 working group on Research Experience for Students, Teachers, and Citizen-Scientists is planning a multi-year project involving variable stars. The project will begin with training programs of several types of binary and transient variable stars that are easy to observe from suburban locations with the naked eye. Eventually it will lead to a capstone project: monitoring the rare and mysterious 2009-2011 eclipse of Epsilon Aurigae. In the summer of IYA 2009, third-magnitude Eps Aur will experience its next eclipse, which occurs every 27.1 years and lasts 714 days, nearly two years! Projects will be developed for three audiences: amateurs, the general public and educators. Planning is still underway; advice and offers to help are welcome.