While at the General assembly in Halifax, I ran into my old colleague Eric Briggs.
Eric worked at Khanscope several years ago, until he shuffled off to Buffalo, NY where he
He had a grin like a chesire cat.
And when Eric has that grin, you know something has to be up.
And it was.
Eric is part of the Puckett Observatory Supernova survey, and had just discovered his
8th Supernova as part of that team.
Discovered July 2, 2015 in galaxy UGC8734, by Eric Briggs, Dick Post, Jack Newton & Tim Puckett
Interestingly, Eric's discovery was confirmed directly in Halifax, Nova Scotia at the Burke-Gaffney
observatory which is located on the campus of St. Mary's University.
Observatory director, David Lane was able to do this utilizing their Planewave 0.6-metre CDK24 telescope.
shortly after the discovery was made, and before it was formally acknowledged.
So this is a direct example of how amateur astronomers can make a direct contribution to science.
You can also do this. In many different areas of astronomical research, if supernovaes aren't your bag.
You don't need any special equipment to do so. In fact, Eric made his first supernova discovery using
a Celestron 8" SCT telescope.
And these are on sale right now.
PS As an interesting aside, Ian Shelton discovered Supernova 1987a, while at Las Campanas observatory
primarily by accident, and of course being in the right place at the right time.
PPS Here is the link again to all Celestron telescopes on sale right now.