A couple months ago, we received word from one of our Educational Group Accounts of a project completed by two year 11 students during their own spare time using iTelescope systems. We are very excited to share some of this wonderful research with you today!
Vina Hing and Linh Thuy Nguyen are two students in year 11 at Prairiewood High School in New South Wales who took on a fantastic research project studying the binary system SZ Scl. They used T9 on the iTelescope.Net Outreach Grant Program to collect photometric observations in B and V during their spare time, of which there is very little for students in year 11.
They then reduced all of their observations using the Vphot system and uploaded all their data to the AAVSO's database. Using their data, as well as other recent data from the database, they then used Binary Maker 3 software to analyse the system. Their mentor and supervisor, Giorgio Di Scala, then created his own analysis and the group compared the work to one another, and they found that the analysis was nearly identical, which is an amazing feat for these busy students!
The project was so fantastic, that on 30th of April, Vina and Linh received First prize at SciCon15, a gathering of five schools from the Met South West area created to link the aspiration and scientific genius of students with the opportunities that await them in the world of science. The Macquarie University Faculty of Science and Engineering awarded a prize valued at $1,000 shared across the 4 prize winners, including Vina and Linh. They were also granted passes to Questacon Science Centre in Canberra!
We are very happy to have been even a small part of this project, as one of the primary goals of iTelescope has always been to bring individuals access to telescope systems and dark sky sites they would normally be unable to use, and this project was a great example of that ideal being put to fantastic use!
If you would like to read Vina Hing and Linh Thuy Nguyen's Eclipsing Binaries paper, please download the document from our main site!