AAVSO: American Association of Variable Star Observers

Hubble Exoplanet Pro/Am Collaboration (Abstract)

Volume 44 number 1 (2016)

Dennis M. Conti
141 E. Bay View Drive, Annapolis, MD 21403; dennis_conti@hotmail.com


(Abstract only) A collaborative effort is being organized between a world-wide network of amateur astronomers and a Hubble Space Telescope (HST) science team. The purpose of this collaboration is to supplement an HST near-infrared spectroscopy survey of some 15 exoplanets with ground-based observations in the visible range. The purpose of the Hubble survey is to characterize the atmosphere of the target planets. The purpose of the ground-based observations is to develop light curves in the visible spectrum of the same planetary transits that HST will be observing in order to: 1) help better refine the ephemeris of the subject planets, and 2) determine any unusual activity such as star spots or flares on the planet’s host star. In addition to the science contributions to the HST exoplanet survey, this collaboration could provide the framework for future such collaborations between professional and amateur astronomers.