[meteorite-list] 2000 Gene Shoemaker NEO Grant Recipients Selected
From: Ron Baalke <baalke_at_meteoritecentral.com>
Date: Thu Apr 22 09:42:02 2004
2000 Gene Shoemaker NEO Grant Recipients
2000 Gene Shoemaker Near Earth Object (NEO) Grants, totaling $33,700 (US),
have been awarded to an international collection of amateur astronomers and
Herman Mikuz of Crni Vrh nad Idrijo, Slovenia
David Dixon of New Mexico, United States
Jana Ticha of Ceske Budejovice, Czech Republic
Tabare Gallardo of Montevideo, Uruguay
Cristovao Jacques of Belo Horizonte, Brazil
Crni Vrh nad Idrijo, SLOVENIA
The Planetary Society is awarding a Gene Shoemaker NEO grant for $7,300, to
Herman Mikuz with the Crni Vrh Observatory to help complete the construction
of a new 60cm telescope. The Crni Vrh Observatory is a privately owned
observatory in Slovenia that has had a regular observing program since 1985.
In 1997, the Crni Vrh Observatory began an asteroid observation program. The
Observatory has been using a 36 cm telescope with a CCD camera and filter
wheel to conduct their NEO research. They are now planning to upgrade their
observing program with a 60cm telescope. Donations and private funding have
helped to begin the process of building the new telescope. The Shoemaker
Grant will also help to fund their ambitious project.
New Mexico, UNITED STATES
The Planetary Society is awarding a Gene Shoemaker NEO grant for $7,300 to
David Dixon with the Jornada Observatory, an amateur observatory in Las
Cruces, New Mexico, United States. With his grant money, Mr. Dixon with
upgrade the observatory's current CCD camera to a larger CCD chip, thus
increasing the sensitivity of the telescope. In addition, the grant is
providing the funds necessary to automate the observatory's dome.
Ceske Budejovice, CZECH REPUBLIC
The Planetary Society is awarding a Gene Shoemaker NEO grant for $6,000 to
Jana Ticha with the Klet Observatory in the Czech Republic. The Klet
Observatory is a small professional observatory that has been using a 0.57m
telescope and CCD camera to do CCD astrometry of NEOs. They are now in the
process of constructing a 1m telescope. The grant money will be used to
finish the optical system of the new telescope.
The Planetary Society is awarding a Gene Shoemaker NEO grant for $5,000 to
Tabare Gallardo with the Los Molinos Astronomical Observatory, located just
north of Montevideo, Uruguay. Students from a local university and area
amateur astronomers use the observatory's 35cm telescope to scan the
southern skies for NEOs. The observatory also has an educational program set
up for middle and high school students as well as an outreach program for
the general public. The observatory will use the grant money to replace
their broken CCD camera and purchase a filter wheel.
Belo Horizonte, BRAZIL
The Planetary Society is awarding a Gene Shoemaker NEO grant for $7,900 to
Cristovao Jacques with the Wykrota Observatory near Belo Horizonte, Brazil.
A local astronomy club founded this observatory in 1998. They began with a
Meade LX-200 12-inch f/10 telescope for their NEO observations. They now
have a 25-inch telescope, a second Meade LX-200 12-inch telescope, and a
4-inch refractor. The two Meade telescopes are dedicated entirely to NEO
research. The observatory will use the grant money to purchase two CCD
The Planetary Society would like to thank the other Shoemaker NEO Grant
The Planetary Society Making it Happen
The Gene Shoemaker NEO Grant
In an effort to advance the study of Near Earth Objects (NEOs), the
Planetary Society created the Shoemaker Near Earth Object Grant program in
1997. Named after planetary geologist Eugene Shoemaker, who dedicated much
of his life to NEO research, the purpose of the grant program is to increase
the rate of discovery and follow-up studies of asteroids and comets in
Earth's vicinity. Grant funding is designed to aid amateur observers,
observers in developing countries, and professional astronomers who, with
seed funding, could greatly increase their programs' contributions to this
Scientists worldwide have only recently begun to understand significance
NEOs have had to the evolution of Earth -- and life on Earth -- just as
impacts from comets and asteroids have contributed to the evolution of
terrestrial planets throughout the solar system.
While various astronomical groups and NASA advisory committees have strongly
recommended discovery of these objects be accelerated, government support
for NEO search and follow-up programs remains modest. As a result, the role
of amateur astronomers in NEO discoveries is increasingly important.
Since its inception, The Planetary Society has awarded Shoemaker NEO Grants
in 1997, 1998, and 2000.
In 1997, the committee awarded grants to four individuals: Gordon Garradd,
Australia; Kirill Zamarashkin, Russia; Walter Wild, Illinois; and Bill
Holiday, Texas. Their projects ranged from upgrading and automating
equipment to building a new NEO research telescope.
In 1998, a total of $27,000 (U.S. dollars) went to three individuals: Stefan
Gajdos, Slovak Republic; Paulo Holvorcem, Brazil; Frank Zoltowski,
Australia. Their projects ranged from upgrading equipment, to creating a
public outreach program.
The 2000 grant winners have just been announced. A total of $33,700 (US)
were awarded to five winners from from Brazil, the Czech Republic, Italy,
Slovenia, the United Stated, and Uruguay.
The Shoemaker NEO Grant is coordinated by Daniel D. Durda, an asteroid
researcher at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado. An
international advisory group reviews the proposals, included noted
near-Earth object scientists:
- Andrea Caruzi, Instituto di Astrofisica Spaziale;
- Al Harris, JPL Scientist;
- Brian Marsden, Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics;
- Alain Maury, Telescope de Schmidt-Observatoire de la Cote d'Azur;
- Syuichi Nakano, Japanese astronomer; and
- Jorge Sahade, La Plata Observatorio Astronomico, Argentina.
Received on Sun 21 Jan 2001 04:57:07 PM PST