Send Your Favorite Targets!


You may recall that in February, we submitted our first follow-up observing proposal.  We asked for two nights of time on the FAST spectrograph on the Tillinghast 1.5m telescope at the Fred Lawrence Whipple Observatory.

Well, not only did the time allocation committee like our proposal.  They gave us more time than we asked for! Depending on the weather, it looks like we will have about four nights to follow up our favorite good candidates.

So now we need to make a new list of targets, and we need your help!

Please send in your suggestions using this online form. We’re looking for objects that are:

1) Good candidates in Disk Detective.

2) Mostly in the Northern hemisphere.  So make sure the declination is > -20 degrees.

3) Up at night during the months of May-July.  That means the Right Ascension of the object should be less than 25 degrees, or greater than 120 degrees.

4) Bright enough to see with this telescope.  That means V magnitude < 15.  You can find the V magnitude for some of the objects at SIMBAD through the Talk pages.  For other objects, you have to look in VizieR. Remember, when you search VizieR, change the search radius to 0.2 arcminutes, to match the WISE beam at 22 microns.

5) And while you’re looking in SIMBAD and VizieR, jot down the spectral type, parallax, the J magnitude, the proper motion, etc.

On this observing run, we will be collecting medium-resolution spectra of the targets, to check if they are indeed stars, and to get better measurements of their luminosity classes–whether they are on the main sequence or not. So if there is not much information in the literature about the spectral type, that’s OK.

But some targets will be clearly identified as giants, or supergiants, or Cepheids, Miras, Be stars, RR Lyrae stars, or Long Period Variables.  These kinds of stars all make their own dust, so finding a disk around them doesn’t indicate a planetary system. You can send those in if you want, but they won’t be our first priority this round.  For now, we’re mainly interested in dwarfs and subgiants (luminosity classes IV and V) and even white dwarfs, if you can find them.

Send in your new target suggestions–as many as you like–in by this Friday (April 11).  And if you can’t find any in time this week, don’t worry! We’ll be applying for more observing time later on.

Here’s the URL for that submission form:

Good luck!






One response to “Send Your Favorite Targets!”

  1. Art says :

    Shouldn’t it be better for others to also send candidates with bad co-ordinates so they would not be forgotten when you can get telescope time from southern observatories?

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