Schools from across Europe join forces on the FTs

On Thursday 26th January, schools from across Europe joined forces to observe an asteroid zipping through our Solar System.

The schools from the UK, Ireland, Poland, Portugal and France are part of a Comenius-funded project, which consists of students from all the schools involved working together on Faulkes Telescope data to investigate asteroids.

The observing day on 26th January was organised by Andre Debackere, from College Le Monteil ASAM in France, in collaboration with the Faulkes Telescope Project (FTP), and LCOGT. Andre set a date for their group observations, and the FTP liaised with LCOGT's Edward Gomez to ensure that slots were available on that day for each school to use. After booking up each slot for the schools, the students were ready to go!

On the day of the observations, FTP team members, Sarah Roberts and Alison Tripp were on hand on Skype to answer any queries from the Comenius group schools.

"This was one of the most fun observing days that we've had in a long time" commented FTP's Education Director, Sarah Roberts. "It was really enjoyable watching the students talking to each other on Skype, and was great seeing how excited they were when the images were coming in from the telescopes".

LCOGT's Astronomy web developer, Stuart Lowe made a quick animation of the observations that the schools took - it's clear to see from this that they managed to snap 2 asteroids moving across the field of view of the telescope - a double success for the project!

Watch this space for reports from the school students on how the day went, and how they plan to analyse their data.

You can also read more about the Comenius project on their team website here. The schools involved are: Grudziadz (Poland), The Leigh Technology Academy (UK), College Le Monteil ASAM (France), Escola Secundária da Cidadela (Portugal), Moreton Hall School (UK) and Regina Mundi College (Ireland).