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Citizen Science

Are you interested in doing some astronomical science but have not been able to afford the equipment and/or lack other resources needed to support the effort? TAAS has a substantial amount of equipment and a dark site (GNTO) that could be used to support your efforts. The GNTO Committee has committed to supporting one or more Citizen Science projects not only with access to existing equipment and regular access to GNTO but also with funding for new equipment or other related expenses.

The concept for this effort is for several TAAS members to create a team for the project, determine what resources are needed, determine what funding is needed, and submit a proposal to the GNTO Committee. Ideally the projects will be affiliated with a professional astronomer or astronomical effort that seeks to advance astronomical understanding and which highlights the ability of amateur astronomers to collect scientifically relevant data.

The sort of science efforts that will be of most value to astronomical understanding will be long-term (several years) so it will be important that the project team is committed to sustaining a several year effort.

Equipment purchased to support a project will be TAAS-owned and will (hopefully) be used to support future projects or other TAAS efforts.

The GNTO Committee will support proposal definition and preparation by providing a list of existing equipment, answering questions, providing site tours, etc. Bill Wallace has a book titled "The Sky Is Your Laboratory: Advanced Astronomy Projects for Amateurs" by Robert K Buchheim that he will loan to anyone who is interested. Send any requests to or call Jim Fordice at 505-803-3640.

A proposal template is available in the GNTO Files.

The GNTO Committee will judge the proposals based on the criteria listed below. Project Teams will be invited to present their proposal if they desire. Selection Criteria:
  1. Expected value of the data to be collected to science and astronomy.
  2. Perceived commitment of the Project Team.
  3. Perceived project ability to collect the proposed data.
  4. Requested funds are available.
Project proposals can be submitted at any time. Proposals should be sent to in a Word-compatible or pdf file. The goal is to support as many projects as is practical. Proposals will be reviewed by the GNTO Committee within 30 days of submission.