FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
For further information contact:
Tim Puckett (Director) POSS
P.O. BOX 818 Ellijay, Ga. 30540 USA
404.281.5686
email: tpuckett@mindspring.com

Puckett Observatory Supernova Search Discovers Its 100th Supernova

Ellijay, GA July 17, 2005 - On July 15, the International Astronomical

Union announced the discovery of Supernova 2005cy by Ajai Sehgal, Jack
Newton and Tim Puckett. This is the 100th supernova discovery made by
the
Puckett Observatory Supernova Search (POSS), setting a new record for
supernova discoveries by a team of amateur astronomers. The discovery
was
confirmed on images taken by Doug George (Ottawa, Canada) .Shortly
after
this discovery was announced, astronomers observed SN2005cy using the
DBSP
spectrograph mounted on the Hale 200 inch telescope at the Mount
Palomar
Observatory and obtained spectrographic information indicating that
SN2005cy is a Type IIn supernova.

POSS is an international team of amateur astronomers, created by Tim
Puckett of Ellijay, GA. Puckett's team of volunteers is located in the

United States, Canada, and Italy. Puckett is adding at least two new
telescopes to the search this year to provide better coverage and
increase
the discovery rate. As a means of increasing coverage, Puckett added a
new
station to POSS this year. Ajai Sehgal's 20" reflector in Osoyoos, BC
was
added to the POSS search, and made the discovery image of Supernova
2005cy.
Puckett will be adding a station in South Africa later this year.

"The key is the Internet and the collaborative spirit of it's members
allowing cooperation between amateur observatories all around the
world.
If we could get enough amateur observatories involved we could be very
effective" Puckett states.

Puckett uses custom software to allow him to keep track of all the
telescopes in the network to avoid overlap and to optimize output . To
date
Puckett has taken more than 850,000 images in the search. Observing
from
dusk until dawn on every clear night, Puckett images approximately 1200
to
1600 galaxies per night using his 24" and 20" reflectors, and the 20"
reflector located at Sehgal Observatory in Osoyoos, BC. These
telescopes
were built by Puckett, who is co-owner of ObservatoryScope, a company
specializing in the building of robotic telescopes. In addition,
Puckett
uses a 14" commercially built telescope. Puckett uses computers to
control
the robotic telescopes and sends the images to other volunteers via the

Internet. Each image is manually compared ("blinked") to archive
images.
Puckett spends approximately 40-50 hours each week running the search.
All
the team members have contributed thousands of hours each.

Professional astronomers further study these supernovae (exploding
stars)
to better understand the life cycle of stars and the acceleration of
the
universe.

Investigators include:

Tim Puckett, Eric Briggs, Peter Ceravolo, Debra Ceravolo, Lou Cox, Tom
Crowley, Robert Gagliano, Ernesto Guido, Doug George, Barbara Harris,
Brian
Kerns, Scott Ireland, Anthony Kroes, Alex Langoussis, Mike Marcus, Jack

Newton, Tom Orff, Mike O'Conner, Andrea Pelloni, Mike Peoples, Vishnu
Reddy, Ajai Sehgal, Darrel Moon, Ingrid Siegert, Giovanni Sostero,
Mark
Taylor, Jennifer Tigner, Dave Toth, Jim Vale.

Details and a gallery of the discoveries may be found here:
http://www.cometwatch.com/search.html

POSS operations have been assisted by corporate sponsors and technology

partners: Apogee Instruments, DC-3 Dreams, Diffraction Limited,
Software
Bisque.


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