• IPAC

July-September 2008 updates for Ms. Tetler

Published: September 15, 2008

Ms. Tetler and two students from her current Astronomy class went with her to the Sptizer Space Center to analyze the data that had been collected on the cataclysmic variable star Z Cha. In the few weeks between getting chosen and before going to the SSC, the students went through an astronomy "boot camp" to get caught up with the topics and concepts that they would encounter, including stellar classifications, H-R diagrams, the live cycles of stars, and light curves. They researched Z Cha and the Spitzer proposal. They also practiced using Image J and Excel as analysis tools, which proved to be very useful as they analyzed the optical data of Z Cha from the ground based telescope in Chile. The optical data as well as the data from Spitzer at 4.5 and 8.0 microns was graphed and phased to show a deep dip in intensity in the visible during eclipse, but far less so in the IR. They think this data means the original question of whether there is circumbinary dust is in fact true. The students, Channy and Brent, will both be working on the data and creating an educational poster as we prepare to go to the AAS meeting in January. Channy is also planning on using this study as her senior project.

We're back from the Jan 2024 AAS and we had a grand time!