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Sunday, December 10, 2006


Sunspot 930 Goes Quiet

Sunspot 930 near the Solar Limb (click to enlarge).

The important thing to remember, if you have a Safe Solar projection system that is mostly made up of sticky tape (even if it is industrial strength gaffer tape), don't use it on a 41°C day. I neglected that simple rule, as a result my rig tended to fall apart just as I was lining up a shot.

Even when the stayed in one place long enough, my shots are disappointing to say the least. The spot was very clear and sharp, with good detail in the penumbra. The image, as you can see, is quite muddy and blurry. Part of this is due to the wind shaking the scope, and part is the inability of the camera to properly focus on the relatively low contrast image.

Next time, I'm going to draw a black cross in the center for the camera to focus on. I'm also going to the hardware store to pick up some flat wooden stips (why did I assemble this out of round dowl, for crikey's sake!) drill some holes and screw them solidly onto the scope support. That should take care of most of the mounting issues.

Sunspot 930 has gone all quiet, after tantalizing us with major solar flares, it has stabilized and is unlikley to erupt in the near future. There have been no further reports of aurora either. Try following Sunspot 930 on the CSU remote telescope.

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