|Section Leader:||Harry Roberts|
The Solar Observing in the ASNSW is conducted by Harry Roberts, who can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
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.
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 harryrobertsastronomy.com/ 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.