Observations

About the Mauna Loa Solar Observatory

The Mauna Loa Solar Observatory (MLSO) occupies part of the NOAA Mauna Loa research site located on the flank of Mauna Loa at an elevation of 3440 meters on the island of Hawaii. It is operated by the High Altitude Observatory, a division of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, which is located in Boulder, Colorado.

Sudden Stratospheric Warmings

Graphic image of ionospheric behavior during the 2009 SSW event
Friday, October 23, 2020

Sudden stratospheric warmings (SSWs) are impressive fluid dynamical events in which large and rapid temperature increases in the winter polar stratosphere (∼10–50km) are associated with a complete reversal of the climatological wintertime westerly winds.

Mapping the magnetic field in the solar corona through magnetoseismology

Graphic image of magnetoseismology observations
Friday, August 14, 2020

Magnetoseismology, a technique of magnetic field diagnostics based on observations of magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) waves, has been widely used to estimate the field strengths of oscillating structures in the solar corona.

Assimilation of Ionosphere Observations in the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model with thermosphere-ionosphere eXtension (WACCMX)

Graphic image of WACCMX+DART experiments
Thursday, July 16, 2020

The Earth’s upper atmosphere impacts a wide range of technologies, including satellite communication and navigation signals. Specification and forecasting of the upper atmosphere are critical for mitigating these effects.

Explicit Form of the Radiative and Collisional Branching Ratios in Polarized Radiation Transport with Coherent Scattering

Schematic diagram showing the polarized radiation transfer in a Lambda-type atomic transition
Tuesday, October 17, 2017

We consider the vector emissivity of the polarized radiation transfer in a Lambda-type atomic transition, which we recently proposed in order to account for both CRD and PRD contributions to the scattered radiation.

NASA's Parker Solar Probe Teams Up With MLSO and WHPI

Graphic image of NASA's Parker Solar Probe

NASA released a story about the The Whole Heliosphere and Planetary Interactions (WHPI) campaign that took place in coordination with Parker Solar Probe’s fourth perihelion.

Opposite Polarity Magnetic Fields and Convective Downflows in a Simulated Sunspot Penumbra

Graphic image of opposite polarity magnetic fields
Tuesday, March 31, 2020

Recent numerical simulations and observations of sunspots show a significant amount of opposite polarity magnetic fields within the sunspot penumbra. Most of the opposite polarity fields are associated with convective downflows.

Multiwavelength High-resolution Observations of Chromospheric Swirls in the Quiet Sun

Graphic image of chromospheric swirls
Wednesday, February 5, 2020

We report observations of small-scale swirls seen in the solar chromosphere. They are typically 2 Mm in diameter and last around 10 minutes.

Boulder scientists’ work key to astonishing images of sun’s surface

ViSP spectrograph system from from the DKIST

The highest resolution images of the solar surface ever seen were made possible to no small degree by the work of Boulder based scientists.

Global-scale observations and modeling of far-ultraviolet airglow

Image depicting measurement, model simulation, and normalized differences
Monday, December 16, 2019

The NASA Global-scale Observations of the Limb and Disk (GOLD) instrument is an ultraviolet imager and spectrograph that observes light from the upper-atmosphere of the Earth, in order to infer quantities such as the composition and temperature of the thermosphere.

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