As some of you may have seen, I have been working on automating my spectroscopy set-up using Voyager Array. I’m preparing a description of my set up and an update on progress which I will post separately.
I’m pleased to report that Voyager Array was instrumental (pardon the pun) in some research that resulted in an Astronomer’s Telegram overnight.
At the suggestion of a mate based in NZ who was keenly reading Gaia alerts last weekend, I took a spectrum of a target that had been increasing in brightness of late. We identified this target with a star that was characterised as a symbiotic only in 2014. My spectrum indicated that the star was in outburst for the first time since its identification.
On Wednesday, the 2SPOT team also obtained a spectrum using an Alpy from their remote observatory in Chile. This spectrum confirmed the target as a symbiotic in outburst. A PHD student in Prague for whom I do spectra from time to time did the analysis, undertook background investigations and wrote an Astronomers Telegram alerting the astronomy community. It was published overnight.
You can read the ATel here: ATel #15340: Gaia22bou: First recorded outburst of symbiotic star WRAY 15-1167
Its this sort of collaboration which makes spectroscopy so rewarding.
Of interest to Voyager users is that this spectrum was obtained with Voyager Array. I simply prepared a sequence for the target and its reference star, added it to my DragScript for Monday night, set it in motion and then wandered off to have dinner with my wife. Voyager looked after focussing, precision slewing to the target (with an accuracy of around 1.5 arc seconds) , calibrating the guider, taking ArNe calibration frames and taking the spectra. It also gathered photometry data with my piggybacked refractor involving focus of that scope, control of the filter wheel and imaging.
Voyager Array managed it beautifully.
What a cool system Leonardo