International Astronomical Search Collaboration: An Online Outreach Program in Astronomical Discovery for High School & College Students


  • J. Patrick Miller Department of Mathematics, Hardin-Simmons University


Student Research, Asteroids


The International Astronomical Search Collaboration was founded in October 2006 at Hardin- Simmons University in Abilene, TX. This is an online educational outreach program, in which high school and college students make original discoveries of Solar System objects; such objects include near-Earth objects, Main Belt asteroids, Trojan asteroids, Centaurs, trans- Neptunian objects, and comets.Images from professional observatories are provided online to the participating schools. Students download these and use the software Astrometrica to search for, discover, and measure these objects. The student observations and astrometric measurements are validated, then submitted to the Minor Planet Center at Harvard University. To date, there have been 1311 submissions of new objects not yet confirmed with subsequent observations, and 50 that are confirmed as new objects, numbered and named by their student discoverers.