Solar Physics

Solar eclipse observations from the ground and air from 0.31 to 5.5 microns

Plot showing Spectra of the limb photosphere during the 21st August 2017 eclipse
Friday, March 29, 2019

We present spectra and broad-band polarized light data from a suite of instruments deployed during the 21st August 2017 total solar eclipse. Our goals were to survey solar spectra at thermal infrared wavelengths during eclipse, and to test new technology for measuring polarized coronal light.

Solar Flare and Geomagnetic Storm Effects on the Thermosphere and Ionosphere During 6–11 September 2017

Graphic plots depicting data from Swarm A and Swarm B satellites
Friday, March 29, 2019

The period of September 6 – 11, 2017 was an active period in which multiple solar flares and a major geomagnetic storm occurred. The two largest flares, an X9.3 and an X8.2 flares, were a disk flare and a limb flare, respectively.

Magnetic tsunami in the Sun triggers new space weather events in 2020

Image of global tachocline fluid top surface deformations

Most people have heard about tsunamis in the Earth’s oceans. Those occur when large masses of water get violently moved at the ocean floor, as a result of earthquakes or volcanic eruptions.

Rotational and Activity Evidence for a Subgiant with a Sun-Like Cycle

Sun-like activity cycle of HD 81809 binary system in calcium HK emission
Wednesday, October 10, 2018

HD 81809 has one of the highest-quality activity cycles from the sample of stars synoptically observed in the Mount Wilson Observatory HK Project.

Outreach and Observing at Mauna Loa in Hawaii

Lisa Waters demonstrating magnetic fields and effects on the sun

Educational outreach is an important and rewarding part of an observer’s job at the Mauna Loa Solar Observatory (MLSO) site located on the flanks of Mauna Loa Mountain at an elevation of 3440 meters in the U.S. state of Hawai’i.

Sources, sinks and propagation characteristics of the quasi 6-day wave and its impact on the residual mean circulation

Amplitudes of the Q6DW as a function of latitude and time
Saturday, August 25, 2018

This study, by Pedatella and others, employs a troposphere to lower thermosphere reanalysis dataset generated by the Whole Atmosphere Community Climate Model with data assimilation provided by the Data Assimilation Research Testbed (WACCM+DART).

Suppression of the polar tongue of ionization during the 21 August 2017 solar eclipse

Polar maps of differential TEC
Saturday, August 4, 2018

It has long been recognized that during solar eclipses, the ionosphere-thermosphere system changes greatly within the eclipse shadow, due to the rapid reduction of solar irradiation.

MHD simulation of prominence eruption

A 3D MHD simulation of the eruption of a prominence-carrying coronal flux rope
Monday, August 6, 2018

Yuhong Fan and others carry out magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations of the quasi-static evolution and eruption of a twisted coronal flux rope under a coronal streamer built up by an imposed flux emergence at the lower boundary.

Experimental testing of scattering polarization models

Broadband fractional polarization Q/I, U/I, and V/I
Wednesday, August 1, 2018

We realized a laboratory experiment to study the polarization of the Na I doublet at 589:3 nm, in the presence of a magnetic eld. The purpose of the experiment is to test the theory of scattering polarization for illumination conditions typical of astrophysical plasmas.

Measured performance of shadow-cast coated gratings for spectro-polarimetric applications

Measured vector efficiency of an echelle grating
Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Roberto Casini et al report on the measurements of the vector efficiency of a reflective blazed diffraction grating, which was specially coated in order to reduce the level of polarization in the diffracted light.

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