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eta Carinae 2014 periastron campaign

PostPosted: Thu Jul 25, 2013 1:08 am
by Bernard Heathcote
This is an early call for amateurs in the southern hemisphere to participate in an international pro-am spectroscopic campaign to monitor the periastron passage of eta Carinae, between May and September 2014 but mainly concentrated over July and August.

Major observatories in Brazil, Chile, New Zealand and South Africa will participate, with telescopes up to 4.1m, and the pro side of the campaign is being coordinated by Mairan Teodoro from NASA. I will coordinate the amateur participation.

The technical requirements are for a resolving power (R) between 5,000 to 20,000 with a S/N>200 for the main HeII 4686 line of interest. Lower S/N might be useful for other emission lines. Meeting these demanding requirements will not be easy, especially as eta Carinae will be fairly low in the sky, and will require at least a 10" scope and a spectrograph such as the Lhires III (or L200 or other equivalent) with a 1200 l/mm or higher grating.

The attached document fully details the campaign.

Bernard Heathcote