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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Solar Arm Chair Observing

I usually consider looking at astrophotos fun, but a poor substitute for getting out and observing under the night sky. One exception for me is solar observing, which can be done in quasi-real time using Neal Monk's Sun Spotter software for the MAC or PC. This software makes real time SOHO images of the sun available at the touch of a button. I especially like the white light "Sunspots" button, because it gives me a view of the sun similar to what I see with my solar filter on my 80mm refractor. I have it set to run on startup, so I get to see what the sun looks like every time I restart my computer. During  the day, I check the sun out periodically to see if anything interesting is happening that I might want to go outside and catch. Give this software a try. I think you'll like it.

Download site for Sun Spotter:

Today's sunspots from Sun Spotter.

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