- Variable Stars
Each fall and spring, students in the Astronomy 110 and 111 classes have a single lab in which they hunt for new asteroids. Each spring, students in the Physics 134 class have an extended set of labs in which they seek to discover and follow the orbits of new asteroids. Follow-up is necessary in order to determine the orbital parameters precisely enough for the asteroids to have permanent numbers assigned by the Minor Planet Center. This requires observations over at least four oppositions.
All Calvin observations are submitted to the Minor Planet Center for inclusion in their publications and central data base. These data are used by solar system dynamicists seeking to reconstruct the history of the asteroid belt in particular and the planets with which they interact.
Because of the thousands of measurements submitted since 2003, 181 asteroids have received permanent designations crediting the Calvin observatory as the discovery site.
See the full list of asteroid discoveries for more details.
- "Efficient spin sense determination of Flora-region asteroids via the epoch method"
- "New Constraints on the Asteroid 298 Baptistina, the Alleged Family Member of the K/T Impactor"
- "The Yarkovsky Effect in the Flora and Baptistina Asteroid Families"
- "Lightcurve Analysis of an Unbiased Sample of Trojan Asteroids"
- "Lightcurve Analysis of a Magnitude Limited Asteroid Sample"
- "Lightcurve analysis of five main belt asteroids at the Calvin-Rehoboth Observatory"
- Pluto's Occultation