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German astronomical observatories own considerable collection of photographic plates. While these observations lead to significant discoveries in the past, they are also of interest for scientists today and in the future. In particular, for the study of long-term variability of many types of stars, these measurements are of immense scientific value. There are about 85000 plates in the archives of Hamburger Sternwarte, Dr. Karl Remeis-Sternwarte Bamberg, and Leibniz-Institut für Astrophysik Potsdam (AIP). The plates are digitized with high-resolution flatbed scanners. In addition, the corresponding plate envelopes and observation logbooks are digitized, and further metadata are entered into the database. The work is carried out within the project “Digitalisierung astronomischer Fotoplatten und ihre Integration in das internationale Virtual Observatory”, which is funded by the DFG.
The COordinated Molecular Probe Line Extinction Thermal Emission Survey of Star Forming Regions (COMPLETE) provides a range of data complementary to the Spitzer Legacy Program "From Molecular Cores to Planet Forming Disks" (c2d) for the Perseus, Ophiuchus and Serpens regions. In combination with the Spitzer observations, COMPLETE will allow for detailed analysis and understanding of the physics of star formation on scales from 500 A.U. to 10 pc.