AAVSO: American Association of Variable Star Observers

Activities of the WASVSO Group (Abstract)

Volume 30 number 1 (2002)

Michael A. Simonsen
Joseph F. Van Poucker
Stephen M. Greene

Abstract

(Abstract only) This poster outlines the goals, activities, and achievements of the Warren Astronomical Society Variable Star Observers (WASVSO), a special-interest subgroup of the Warren Astronomical Society in Michigan. The WASVSO holds monthly meetings to discuss variable star behavior, terminology, current events, observing techniques, Internet resources, software, and of course, the weather. Ongoing projects include monitoring cataclysmic variables, active galactic nuclei, and stars that need more observations from the AAVSO News Flashes and Alert Notices. We are also actively involved in “spreading the word” about AAVSO and variable star observing through presentations at star parties and a speaker exchange program with other astronomy clubs throughout the Midwest and Canada. The WASVSO also maintains an impressive website featuring member areas, upcoming events, articles on variable stars and observing techniques, charts for obscure cataclysmic variables, utilities for observing, and links to variable star organizations and observers throughout the world. Members of the WASVSO contributed 94% of all variable star observations submitted to the AAVSO from Michigan in the fiscal year 2000–2001, and our enthusiasm has catapulted Michigan from 20th place to 11th in overall numbers of US observations submitted to AAVSO in one year.