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WL Solar Sketch 12 Jan. 2013

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#1 Special Ed

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 01:00 AM

Hi,

The solar max is finally living up to its name with this giant active region (AR 1654) which has rotated into view over the past few days.

I didn't have much time but it only took a half hour to set up the binoculars and make this sketch. I used 2B and HB pencils and a stump.

Check out the Daystar soon if you can. :)

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#2 Jeffrey C.

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 04:33 AM

Very good sketch! Do you also determine the sunspot number?

#3 Aquarellia

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 05:07 AM

Good question Jeffrey !
Do you know that since Galileo, the only continuous data we have determining the sun spot number is this kind of sketch. As far as I know only 3 professional observatories (in Switzerland, US and… Belgium) and a lot of amateur ones are still doing this work.
For your Belgian country have a look here http://sidc.oma.be/uset/
Yesterday I was able to detect this giant spot with unaided eye, just through appropriate filter. This is not so common.
You did here a nice one Michael!

#4 frank5817

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 12:16 PM

Michael,

Beautiful sketch and thanks for the heads up. I have been following the activity on line via sketching and imaging sites. Socked in now many days with clouds.

Frank :)

#5 JimPie

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 02:24 PM

Micheal,
Excellent sketch, Is that a filament running through that cluster of active regions? Very interesting.

#6 Andrev

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 06:20 PM

Lucky man

Nice view of the sun. Nice representation and you are lucky to able to see this group. I didn't have any clear sky since it's there.

Andre

#7 Ibmelrod

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Posted 13 January 2013 - 11:50 PM

Michael,

Fine sketch of a dramatic group. My sky has been overcast for days so thanks for posting.

#8 Uwe Pilz

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 12:05 AM

I saw this group with the unaided eye fisrt and then with my 8 cm Apo. Dramatic, indeed.

#9 niteskystargazer

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 10:03 AM

Michael,

Good sketch of the Sun :cool:.

CS,KLU,

:thanx:,

Tom

#10 JeanB

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 10:47 AM

Lovely sketch. I like it!

Jean

#11 Special Ed

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Posted 14 January 2013 - 06:32 PM

Thanks, everyone! It was really fun to get a look at our nearest star and see so much going on. :)

@JeffreyC & Aquarellia--I've never done a sunspot number count--never seem to have consistent clear weather to start doing it--but it is a thing that we amateurs can do to make a small contribution. They have been making a sketch and a sunspot number count at the Mt Wilson observatory every clear day since 1917. http://obs.astro.ucl...u/150_draw.html

@Frank, Andre, & Mel--it has been basically overcast here almost every day since mid-December so a clear(ish) day on a weekend made me jump. :grin:

@JimPie--that is not a filament trailing the leading and middle spots in AR 1654 but rather the penumbrae associated with the umbrae (the dark cores) of the sunspots in the solar photosphere. You need an H-alpha filter (or dedicated solar telescope like the PST) to look into the chromosphere and see filaments. There may well have been active region filaments (ARF's) connecting those sunspots visible in the photosphere but you need to look in a different wavelength to see them. See why solar observing is so much fun? :cool:

@Uwe--I knew when I could see the AR with the unaided eye that they would be impressive through the binoculars. I'll bet they were even more so seen through your telescope.

Back to clouds and rain here. :p

#12 Jeffrey C.

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 03:39 AM

@ Aquarellia: I know of 4 observatories in Europe that determine the sunspot number: Ukkel, Kanzelhöhe, Catania and Locarno. Their observations can also be viewed on their website.
I myself started in 1997 with solar observing and the counting of sunspots. I send my observations to the Belgian Solar Observers, CV-Helios, Intersol and since 2006 I'm listed as an observing station for SIDC.
The real fun is making graphs and following the sun's activity over the years.

#13 PeterDob

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 07:38 AM

Stunning sketch! I like the way you draw the sunspots... Very realistic!

Peter

#14 Chopin

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 08:48 AM

Excellent, Michael! Impressive view with 15x binos. I most appreciate how well you've done with only pencils.

#15 Special Ed

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Posted 15 January 2013 - 10:26 PM

Peter and Jason, thank you for your kind comments. :)

#16 Special Ed

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Posted 18 January 2013 - 03:00 PM

Hi,

Six days after my intial observation I was able to revist the Sun and giant Active Region 1654. In that time the AR has rotated almost completely across our view of the solar disk and a new active region has rotated into view and is parked on the central meridian.

Of interest are faculae near AR 1654. These are bright areas associated with active regions that can only be seen in white light when they are near the limb--the limb darkening allows them to be detected.

Once again I used 2B and HB pencils on the sketch.

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#17 niteskystargazer

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 12:28 PM

Michael,

Very Nice sketch of the Sun :cool:.

CS,KLU,

:thanx:,

Tom

#18 frank5817

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Posted 19 January 2013 - 07:31 PM

Michael,

Very nice second sketch after nearly a week.
I remember seeing those bright spots (faculae) at the solar limb as a teenager and thought at that time there was something wrong with my optics.
Always a pleasure to see your work.

Frank :)

#19 Special Ed

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 01:03 PM

Tom, Frank, thanks! Frank, it sounds like you've been a good observer since you were young if you noticed the faculae. :cool:

#20 PeterDob

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 01:21 PM

It's nice to see the difference of a week indeed. Also looks like the activity of 1654 is decreasing. Again your work is an excellent example of what you can already see with a couple of good binos. Great job!

Peter

#21 Ibmelrod

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Posted 20 January 2013 - 11:53 PM

Michael,

Very nice image and presentation.

#22 Special Ed

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Posted 21 January 2013 - 11:08 AM

Peter, Mel, thank you. :) AR 1654 did indeed decay and has now rotated around the solar limb out of our line of sight. Sometimes these big AR's stay active and rotate back into view two weeks later (whereupon they get a new number). Mark your calendar for Feb. 3rd-4th and see what happens. :grin:

#23 ericj

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Posted 29 January 2013 - 11:53 PM

Fine sketch with you bino's Mike.

Best,

Eric






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