Astronomers Without Borders and International Astronomical Search Collaboration (IASC=”Isaac”) are sponsoring a special Asteroid Search Campaign as part of Global Astronomy Month. IASC is an online educational outreach program for high school and college students to make original astronomical discoveries.
During the campaign, each team will receive 20 unique sets of images (weather permitting) and search them for asteroids using Astrometrica software. Each image set will be taken along the celestial ecliptic at the University of Hawaii (Pan-STARRS) and will be sent to each team just hours after they have been taken. Using the software Astrometrica, the team will accurately measure the time and position of asteroids moving in the background. The measurements are recorded in a report sent to IASC. IASC will provide support through their website to learn the software and to answer questions by email.
Each year 1200 teams participate from more than 80 countries. Since the first search in October 2006, over 1500 asteroids have been discovered and 52 asteroids have been numbered by the International Astronomical Union (Paris). Numbered asteroids are recorded in the world’s official minor planet catalog and will be named by their student discoverers.