AAS Meeting #193 - Austin, Texas, January 1999
Session 98. Low Mass Stars and Brown Dwarfs
Display, Saturday, January 9, 1999, 9:20am-4:00pm, Exhibit Hall 1

[Previous] | [Session 98] | [Next]

[98.09] NASA's Nearby Stars Project

T. J. Henry (Harvard-Smithsonian CfA), D. E. Backman (Franklin \& Marshall College), R. Christensen, K. Moller, E. Vacin, S. West (NASA Ames)

In 1998, NASA initiated the Nearby Stars Project (NSTARS), which intends to make a vigorous reconnaissance of stars within 20 parsecs of the Sun. The NSTARS goal is to develop a comprehensive observational and theoretical understanding of the nearest stars. Information is being gathered about each star's fundamental characteristics, including: astrometry, luminosity, temperature, optical/infrared spectral energy distribution, age, activity level, metallicity, companions (both stellar and planetary), and quantification of exozodiacal dust, if any. NSTARS currently includes two primary areas of effort, Database and Research. Construction has begun on the Database, which will be web-accessible and provide important high-quality information about the nearest stars. Examples will be shown of prototype "Front" and "Back" pages included in the Database. An important difference between NSTARS and previous nearby star efforts such as the Catalog of Nearby Stars is the presence of a significant, directed, Research effort. NSTARS is supporting observing programs to discover "missing" members of the nearby star sample, and to characterize the population astrometrically, photometrically, and spectroscopically. NSTARS will also impose quality control on data already available. Given the public's clear interest in stars near to the Sun, a third area of effort, Education, is planned once the first two efforts are firmly established. Through the NSTARS Project, a high-quality resource will be available for professional astronomers worldwide, as well as any members of the public who might be interested.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: thenry@recons.harvard.edu

[Previous] | [Session 98] | [Next]