Visual observing

Many variable star observers start their journey by visually observing variables that can be viewed through binoculars or small telescopes. There is a long history of serious research done in this manner, and it requires no further equipment such as cameras, filters and computers. In this regard it is ideal for beginners; yet it is also the true passion of many variable star observers around the world.

For more information about doing research using visual observing, see this article.

Projects for visual observers

Note that like the DSLR area, this area of research within VSS is based around the technique of observing, rather than purely the nature of the objects being studied. Some of the projects below therefore overlap with the research areas that focus purely on specific types of variable stars.

BL Tel Project

Project Leader: Peter Williams

Visual observers are invited to participate in monitoring of BL Tel for which ongoing observations are required. BL Tel was the subject of a long-term visual study between 1983 and 2000 with 8 eclipses recorded during that time. Results of those eclipses are summarised in Publications 25 (C99) of the VSS RASNZ (2000). BL Tel is an Algol type system well suited to visual observation and need only be followed during the 3 months centred on the predicted date of mid eclipse.