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  Solar Activity: Astronomy: Solar Activity - Sunspot-OBSERVING SUNSPOTS
Posted on Tuesday, December 07 @ 13:36:11 CST by astronomy
  Solar Activity


As the Sun rotates on its axis, you can watch a group of sunspots travel from one edge of the disk to the other over a period of about 10 days. A few long-lived spots will come around for a second period of visibility.

Sunspot observations are often best around mid-morning. At this time of day, you can see the Sun without a lot of atmosphere in the way and before it has heated your surroundings too much.

To count sunspots visually through your telescope, use a solar aperture filter and a magnification that shows the whole disk. Note the number and positions of the sunspot groups, then switch to an eyepiece giving 65 power, the agreed-upon standard. Revisit each group and count the individual spots. The total estimated number of sunspots, R, is given by the formula:
R = 10g + s, where g is the number of groups, and s is the total number of spots seen. Summaries of these numbers are regularly published in astronomy magazines.




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