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Session 84 - QSOs and BL Lacs.
Display session, Wednesday, January 17
North Banquet Hall, Convention Center

[84.04] Optical Variability of Radio-Bright PG Quasars

D. Weistrop, D. B. Shaffer, S. Cruzen, V. Harvey, C. Hoopes, J. Johnson (UNLV), J. Smith (MIT)

We have undertaken a program to search for short-term optical variability in the most radio-luminous PG quasars. From VLA radio observations, we have picked the ten quasars with the most luminous radio cores for a program of optical monitoring with the Lowell Observatory 31-inch telescope. A typical observing run consists of three nights during which two quasars are imaged each night for several hours with 4-minute CCD exposures. Several of the quasars have also been observed on separate nights that are months to a year apart. If the radio luminosity of these quasars is high because we are looking down the axis of a beamed (black-hole?) source, then we expect that this sample should show more short- and long-term variability than radio-faint quasars in the PG or other samples. We will report results for seven of the PG quasars. The Lowell 31-inch telescope, under an agreement with Northern Arizona University and the NURO Consortium, is operated 60% of the time as the National Undergraduate Research Observatory.

Program listing for Wednesday