Sorry for my lack of weekly solar images. But luckily I am back and have some images to share of the sun today.
On August 31st sunspot 1560 released a coronal mass ejection resulting in a C-8 solar flare. The CME released by 1560 isn’t exactly Earth directed, but it should deliver a glancing blow to our planets magnetic field. 1560 has quadrupled in size over the last few days, and NOAA forecasts a 40% chance for M-class flares from this sunspot.
Sunspots: 1563, 1564, 1562, 1560, 1553
1560 is the chain of sunspots near the center of the sun in the image above. 1562, 1563, and 1564 are the cluster of sunspots to the left side of the sun; 1553 is the small sunspot on the lower right just about to pass along the limb and disappear out of our view from Earth. The above image is 53 images stacked in Registax and edited in Photoshop.
Above is a closeup view of sunspot 1560. This image is 20 images stacked in Registax and edited in Photoshop. Again, it’s very hard to achieve a sharp focus with the setup I’m using to zoom in on this sunspot. Using the Canon 350D and the 1.25″ Orion Variable Universal Camera Adapter.
Throughout the week of July 8-14 I was able to get out each day to get an image of sunspot 1520 as it made it’s way across the face of the sun. During it’s trek it released the X1.4 flare I posted yesterday.
One thing I noticed with the projection eyepiece adapter is that it is very difficult to adjust the focus when magnified that much without a fine focus control knob on the telescope. I made do with what I have to bring an image from each day, and I would have continued imaging for two more days as it went around the limb, but unfortunately clouds have rolled in for the next couple days. Some images are a little grainy from me trying to pull out as much detail as I can, and others are blurry from not able to achieve the focus that was necessary. Most days I only had the one shot at the sun before it was too low on the horizon, or behind trees.
The following strip of images is a large file size, so when you click it you will have to scroll up and/or down to view all images in the image strip.
Sunspot 1520 July 8-14, 2012
This was a fun little project to try, and I hope that I get another week of clear skies to track another large sunspot across the face of the sun.
All images taken with the Omni XLT 150 telescope and Canon 350D camera using the Orion Variable Universal Camera Adapter with a 12.5mm eyepiece inserted in it. Multiple images taken each day stacked in Registax and edited in Photoshop.
I love a nice clear day with no clouds in the sky, it usually means I can drag the telescope and the solar filter out for some solar observing. This is especially nice when it happens on a weekend, so that I can just go out on the back deck before the sun gets behind one of the many trees in the yard.
Doing these weekly images is a lot of fun, especially now that I have a way to magnify on a specific sunspot using my DSLR. Just like last week there is a big sunspot coming around the southeastern limb of the sun, sunspot 1520 with small sunspot 1519 right next to it. Above those two is a small, not very visible, sunspot 1518, and 1514, and 1513 turning away from the Earth’s view.
Sunspots 1513, 1514, 1518, 1519, 1520
Sunspot 1520 is the big sunspot spanning a distance of 127000 km (you can fit 10 Earths inside of this sunspot) from end to end. This sunspot harbors the energy for M-class flares, so I’ll be watching for the possibilities as the week goes on, and maybe we’ll get a chance for auroras here in the Adirondacks. NOAA estimates an 80% chance of M-flares in the next 24 hours although so far 1520 has only produced the lesser C-flares.
Sunspots 1520 and 1519
All images taken with the Omni XLT 150 and Canon 350D. Full disk sun is 195 images stacked in Registax and post processed in Photoshop. Closeup of sunspot 1520 is 65 images using an Orion Variable Camera Adapter eyepiece projector giving me a magnification of roughly 183x.
Today I decided to get out in the heat, and do some solar images. I couldn’t resist going out seeing how many sunspots there were, and how nice of a cluster there was in the southeast limb of the sun. The main thing that really got me out was a notification of geomagnetic activity.
I had a bit of difficulty achieving focus for some reason, it seems to be hit or miss when I go out and get images of the sun. I was able to pull together a decent stack of the sun to show off the sunspots.
Sunspots: 1512, 1513, 1514, 1515, 1516
This image is 100 images stacked in Registax, and post processed in Photoshop.
This next image was me using my new Orion Variable Universal Camera AdapterI got on Amazon. I used my 12.5mm eyepiece in the projector to get this magnification. The quality of this isn’t quite what I was going for, but overall I’m very happy with the way this came out for my first use. Sunspot 1515 is the largest one on the face of the sun at the moment, and I had to try my hand at getting images of it.
Sunspots 1515 and 1516
This image is 50 images stacked in Registax and post processing done in Photoshop.
Starting yesterday afternoon into today there has been a geomagnetic storm caused by large sunspot 1504. The aurora reached storm level as this sunspot crossed the face of the sun, and blasted 2 CME’s towards Earth.
Sunspots: 1504, 1505, 1507, 1508. 6-16-12
This image of the sun is 100 images stacked in Registax with some post processing done in Photoshop. Images were taken yesterday (June 16, 2012) afternoon, but I ran into some issues when stacking.