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L. J. Robinson, J. Roth (Sky Publishing), Sky Publishing Corp. Team
The next nearby supernova is likely to be first detected by neutrino observatories. At best, they will determine its position to within some tens of square degrees. Since the supernova has a 50:50 chance of being mv < 6, even at maximum, a thorough optical search for the putative star will almost certainly be needed.
To aid in the immediate search for the supernova, Sky Publishing Corp. has established AstroAlert, a worldwide e-mail network of some 2,000 amateur and other small-telescope users. The announcement of a probable supernova will be made by the Supernova Neutrino Early Warning System and automatically forwarded to participants through AstroAlert. Details of the AstroAlert network will be described as well as protocols for validating the ``guest" star and obtaining its precise position.