Solar images 2/4/16

Recently there has been very few sunspots present on the sun lately. This can be an indication that Solar minimum is coming –  the period of least solar activity in the 11 year solar cycle of the sun. But as the skies were very clear in the day, I decided to take my equipment out and do some solar imaging and observation.

Equipment used:

Skywatcher ED80 refractor, Daystar Quark Chromosphere, ZWO ASI178MM-cooled imager, iOptron ZEQ25 mount.

There was only one sunspot visible today, named AR2526. Hence after imaging this for a while and also some other features on the chromosphere, I scanned around the edges of the sun for prominences. It was great that there were 2 relatively large prominences present, and which I have managed to capture below.

First image is of the sunspot AR2526, the sole sunspot present on the sun. There were also  a few filaments scattered through the sun, but otherwise there was not much other activity in the chromosphere.

Sunspot AR2526
Sunspot AR2526
12_28_46_g3_ap990_RS
Some filaments present

But fortunately there were two interesting prominences to observe and image. I managed to get my daughter, my wife and her friend to observe these prominences as well as the sunspot, as I felt they looked very interesting.

Very impressive prominence
Very impressive prominence
Colorised prominence image
Colorised prominence image
The other prominence - this was close to the sunspot
The other prominence – this was close to the sunspot
Colorised prominence image
Colorised prominence image

In white light, the only thing to observe on the sun would have been that lone sunspot. But with H-alpha, it is possible to see a whole lot more in the sun.

Boon