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ASNSW's Solar Observing Section

Section Leader: Harry Roberts

The Solar Observing in the ASNSW is conducted by Harry Roberts, who can be contacted at

This image shows early views of group AR11429, made with the C8 and 4" Mak. West is to the right. This is the most complex of magnetic classes: an island delta group. These emerge with unlike fields contained in a single penumbra - and those fields are reversed. That is, they do not match the arrangement of normal spots in their hemisphere: they have violet preceding (on western side) while this one has red. This is a magnetic rarity. 

Solar Observing

The sun is perhaps the easiest astronomical object to study in the "burbs".  No need to travel far from city lights; and it changes daily, often in dramatic ways. The more  you view - the more you see, and the more amazing it all becomes. In H-alpha wierd behaviour of high temperature plasmas is seen - including solar flares.

Entry level sunwatching is with a small white light scope equipped with a CERTIFIED SAFE solar filter, at very modest cost. A few dedicated sunwatchers in Sydney make (almost) daily observations. The world-wide web allows real time access to satellites and a few specialised observatories that augments our amateur views - permitting a greater understanding of solar physics that ever before. I will post some  links on for those who are interested.

Note: there is a chance that the US National Solar Observatory teams are right: and this (SC24) is the LAST solar cycle for quite some time! Don't delay if you are planning to study the sun.

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