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Topics - mpacker

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TAC Visual / Possible CA Aurora
« on: September 07, 2017, 07:08:49 PM »
Space Weather Message Code: ALTK08
Serial Number: 23
Issue Time: 2017 Sep 07 2350 UTC
With K-index of 8 report from NOAA there it may be possible to see the Aurora Borealis here - trick is dark sight like San Luis Reservoir, Lake Berryessa...

ALERT: Geomagnetic K-index of 8
Threshold Reached: 2017 Sep 07 2350 UTC
Synoptic Period: 2100-2400 UTC
Active Warning: Yes
NOAA Scale: G4 - Severe

TAC Visual / Big New Sunspot gif
« on: August 30, 2017, 06:42:59 PM »
A big new sunspot AR2674 is rotating into view over the sun's eastern limb.

TAC Visual / Moon and Grav Wave Lecture
« on: July 13, 2017, 09:30:26 PM »
1st here's the scoop on lecture:
Gravitational Waves from Astronomical Objects: Theory to Observation
Brett Shapiro
Please join us for the July Café Scientifique event on Thursday July 20th from 5-7pm at HanaHaus in Palo Alto (456 University Ave).  We'll be having a conversation about gravitational waves with Brett Shapiro of Stanford University.
If you are interested in attending please register online here:

Finally - welcome to "light side" Mark and nice image. Binoviewers give my setup away and I updated my Study the Moon pages with data to 2018:

Mag -26.74 Michael

TAC Visual / Random onset of solar flares is making more sense
« on: March 29, 2017, 08:35:06 PM »
Well this tallies with my observations. The random onset of solar flares is making more sense.

Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) images reveal small-scale magnetic fields in the inner corona may be linked to the onset of a main flare. Study also includes contributions from NJIT's newly commissioned Extended Owens Valley Solar Array (EOVSA). Two hello-observatories worth keeping an eye on.

TAC Visual / Outstanding 1440p vid of Solar Cycle
« on: February 18, 2017, 08:23:41 AM »
OMG for Heliophiles:  And for those who watched this last solar max - Venus transit all - check out below 1440p HD - Full screen of course

I know a lot of folks who saw these sun spot and flares (H-alpha lower right) with me and SJAA.

Notables if you slow vid to 1/4th : Which "Jupiter" SN's made it through an entire solar revolution, watch face-on SN's form & dissipate. Especially nice to have the H-alpa to see which ones were active when butted up at the solar rim - especially if you recorded your obs. - which I did :)

Mag -26.74

TAC Visual / 1x Vis Sunspot & just 1
« on: May 18, 2016, 05:43:20 PM »
AR 2546 is a massive single quite symmetrical spot visible at 1x with a pair Solar glasses and your eye correction optics if you use them. This a pretty unusual one spot @ 1x - and not needing or being a part of a group. So if you missed the Venus (or Mecury) Transit ...    :)

AR 2546 looked like a hole at the limb (Wilson effect) a few days ago - so look for effect again as it nears the other side.

By far the Sun has been best to view using just a Standard Sol filter these past days. But in H-alpha 2546 today it did look like a Black Widow Spider with a network of legs (plage following field lines) facing 2544 and a bulb/body of plage and distorted surface opposite.

TAC Visual / Sunspot count - 1 (SN=10)
« on: March 31, 2016, 02:27:10 PM »
There's a beauty to the lone sunspot visible over next few days.

Size      - about a half dozen Earths
Shape     - oval with a prototypical unblemished spider web penumbra
Core      - umbra neatly broken into 3 pieces of equal size
Overall   - looks like a cell undergoing tripolar mitosis.

TAC Visual / The underside of an Alpha Loop
« on: February 23, 2016, 04:22:44 PM »
90% of the time heliophiles appreciate H-alpha flares from side jutting from the solar disc. 10% of time - from the top - projected on the photosphere. Today I was happy to observe a loop prominence rise up from the photosphere high enough to see it's underbelly as it came back down beyond the limb of the disc. No new science - just 3D beautiful.

TAC Visual / complex solar views: a cricket, scorpian & tongue
« on: February 13, 2016, 04:00:48 PM »
Complex sunspots and H-alpa flares

AR2497 is a large ill defined dense group of at least 22 spots and penumbra, pores and faculae
it will be around for a few days and is worth a large aperture look

And complex H-alpha structure around the solar disc today:
The largest proms were at 12 and 9 and 7 (rel to solar north)
the group around  9 - hedge row and broken loop
the group around 12 - a wicked broken loop resembling woofs tongue (so well depicted in many red riding hood tales)
the group around 7 was active - a compact bright prom, a Zirin's G stucture complex, or a cricket complete with thorax, wings and 2 antennae. immediate adjacent was a faint 15 earth diam Zirin H class extensive structure looking an awful like the constellation scorpio. 

TAC Visual / X MASS Sunspot!?
« on: December 23, 2015, 09:44:37 AM »
In the past 24 hours, sunspot AR2473 has quadrupled in size and is spinning into view. "X MASS" Sunspot? Well if AR2473 creates an X Class fare resulting in a CME or Coronal *Mass* Ejection then yes! ★never look at the sun without a proper solar filter★

Mag -26.74

TAC Visual / 1x visible Sunspot
« on: August 08, 2015, 02:04:26 PM »
The rapid growth of sunspot AR2396 is continuing. Yesterday it was huge. Today it is 50% larger.

Mag -26.74

TAC Visual / Nice visual 4-end of Solar Cycle?
« on: June 11, 2015, 06:16:58 PM »
The sunspot count today was over 100 (NOAA) and is on the high side of what we have been seeing lately as the sun quiets down. If you look at these beautiful smattering of umbra and fibrils you may note groups close to equator while the remaining groups straddle the equator at a distance. This looks remarkably like meridional graph sunspot graph that depicts the cyclical nature of the solar dynamo.

TAC Imaging / 1x Vis sunspot
« on: May 09, 2015, 01:13:20 PM »
100 000 miles but network of active region in Ha is 1/3 the solar disc - a must see/image in either filters

TAC Visual / Huge Sunspot AR2339
« on: May 07, 2015, 04:15:27 PM »
Yesterday, sunspot AR2339 unleashed an intense X2-class solar flare. The active region has doubled in size since yesterday - It is now over 100,000 miles and spinning into view.

Mag -26.74

TAC Visual / Happy Astronomy Day!
« on: April 25, 2015, 08:46:36 PM »
We dodged the clouds today!

Blog + Pics of our "taking astronomy to the people"

Mag -26.74

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