Published: January 15, 2008
In October, Ms. Thomas and her student, Kimmerlee Johnson, came to SSC to reduce data for the WZ Sge. They reduced the data from the Spitzer Space Telescope using IRAF and DS9 and then constructed light curves using Excel. In addition, data from the 0.9 meter telescope at Kitt Peak was obtained and synchronized with the timing of the Spitzer observations. That data was also reduced and again light curves were constructed and then anazlyzed. They collaborated during the visit about modeling this system, and decided to present two posters at the AAS conference in Austin, Texas in January. One poster would be a scientific presentation, while the other would focus on educational applications. They developed three education activities we would like to create and model and which we would like the poster to depict. The three activities are:
- Assemble a physical model to represent a binary system and a simulation of a CV binary system using downloadable materials.
- Plot, create and interpret a light curve from the Spitzer data
- Simulate a light curve using grid for each component of the system
In November, Ms. Thomas gave a presentation about her involvement in the Spitzer Space Telescope to a Delta Kamma Gamma group of about 20 women. She developed and piloted an activity in which students plot, create and interpret a light curve using Spitzer data.
January provided an opportunity to attend and present the posters, both scientific and educational, sharing information about WZ Sge. Ms. Thomas' student Kimmerlee also attended and presented at the meeting. In addition, planning and collaboration occured about future proposals. Another proposal, using IRAC and photometry, has been submitted to observe other interacting binary stars using the Spitzer Space Telescope.