AAS 205th Meeting, 9-13 January 2005
Session 48 Visible-Light Telescopes, Instruments, and Technology
Poster, Tuesday, January 11, 2005, 9:20am-6:30pm, Exhibit Hall

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[48.09] Autoguiding and Defocus Experiments for CCD Differential Photometry

E. J. Sturm (California Polytechnic State University)

A number of smaller observatories utilize relatively low-cost, off-the-shelf telescopes and CCD cameras to obtain differential photometric measurements of variable stars. Obtaining the best-possible differential photometric precision, as evidenced by the standard deviations of the comparison-check differentials, is often a vital goal. This series of experiments is investigating, for two different Meade LX-200 telescopes (each equipped with an SBIG ST-7XE camera), the relationship between: (1) autoguiding precision and differential photometric precision, and (2) focus precision and differential photometric precision. The effects of purposefully introducing both autoguiding “errors” (i.e. small telescope movements) and image defocus on differential photometric precision are being evaluated. Telescope time is being provided by the Orion and Dark Ridge Observatories. I acknowledge the assistance of Russell Genet (Orion Observatory), Thomas Smith (Dark Ridge Observatory), and John Mottmann (California Polytechnic State University), as well as the financial support by the Department of Physics, California Polytechnic State University for conference and travel expenses.

The author(s) of this abstract have provided an email address for comments about the abstract: esturm@atl.calpoly.edu

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© 2004. The American Astronomical Society.