Staring at the Sun, 11

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7/13/2010. I've been shooting through the raindrops: yesterday brought torrential rain and this morning promised more. A glance at and the solar monitoring services at the bottom of these pages insured that I kept one eye on the weather. AR11087 was intensifying and rotating into better view. At the first sign of sunlight, I put the solar telescope on a Giro altaz mount and set it outside. There were times that I found the Sun by the gleam of 1087 alone. Then as clouds thinned and blew across the face of the Sun, the detail in the active region became hypnotizing. It's huge (we'll see how it compares to active regions in years to come as the Sun spins up toward solar max), intricate and brilliant. An early afternoon interval of clear weather gave me a chance to try some fresh photos. First, here's a resampled, web-sized rendition of the full frame:

sunspot 1087

Lunt LS60Ha with DS50 on A-P Mach1.
Canon 50D, barlow on EP extension tube. ISO 400.
10, 1/4 second exposures. Opened in Maxim DL, red plane isolated.
Aligned and added in Photoshop.


Adding ten frames at this exposure left the flares overexposed during sharpening steps, and it took a good bit of work to retain bright detail in the center of the active region. Maybe a data filet of the best 8 would work slightly better, but this looks pretty good to me. The next two frames are black and white and colorized crops of the active region at full scale. The color was applied using Noel Carboni's tools, the B/W to Ha with black space action in particular. Then I messed with hue and saturation to produce a more easily viewed pallete.






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                   © 2010, David Cortner