Presentation #403.03 in the session Exoplanet Transits — iPoster Session.
Our team of 15 undergraduate students uses Smith College’s Meade 16” LX200 ACF telescope with an SBIG STXL-6303 CCD at the college’s McConnell Rooftop Observatory to observe transiting exoplanets. We observe one target field each clear night, usually with one-minute cadence and total duration about six hours. We use AstroImageJ to reduce our data and conduct differential photometry via 10-20 comparison stars in the same field as the target star to obtain light curves with RMS around 2 mmag for stars with R-band magnitudes of 10-12. The uncertainty in our data timestamp is of order 1 millisecond.
Our program has two main goals: 1. As members of the TESS Followup Observing Program Science Group 1 (TFOP SG1), we observe candidate exoplanets from the NASA TESS satellite and search for false positive systems such as nearby eclipsing binary stars within a few arcmin from the TESS target; and 2. We observe known Hot Jupiters with predicted transits during our observing windows, so that the light curves can be used to search for additional planets via the transit timing variation (TTV) method. To date during this academic year, we have observed 14 transits, including 7 TESS targets and 7 Hot Jupiters. We present and discuss all 14 light curves here.