In view of the support received I have modified my proposal to request that the section be set up without any further polling of BAA members (see last paragraph of revised proposal below)
Is it time for a BAA Exoplanet Section ?
This is a relatively new field in which the BAA ought to have a presence and forming an Exoplanet Section would achieve this. There are a number of opportunities for both practical amateur involvement and for armchair enthusiasts.
Potential section objectives
Foster interests in all aspects of exoplanets by advising members of; latest developments, on-line courses, meetings, resources via a regular newsletter and the section’s website
Encourage and provide support for practical projects both amateur and pro-am and promote a greater understanding of exoplanet discoveries and properties. For example;
– Transit imaging
– On-line analysis of transit lightcurves to search for exoplanets
– Participation in pro-am projects (e.g. Project Twinkle)
– Keeping up to date on exoplanets in general
– Knowledge of ground and space-based observatories and technology
– Understanding astrobiology (by on-line courses for example)
Establishing links with related organisations
– UK Centre for Astrobiology
– UK Exoplanet Community
– Centre for Exoplanet Science
– SETI Institute
– Planetary Society
– British Interplanetary Society
Education and outreach
– Awareness of courses (mostly on-line)
– Schools projects relating to transit lightcurve interpretation
Request to Council
Having been in touch with a number of BAA members I find that there is considerable support for forming an Exoplanet section, in fact some members are already engaged in exoplanet observations. I therefore request that Council give serious consideration to forming such a section.