First images from deformable mirror telescope at Big Bear

See amazing new sun images from NJIT’s Big Bear Solar Observatory

Caption: The most detailed sunspot ever obtained in visible light was seen by new telescope at NJIT’s Big Bear Solar Observatory.

Credit: Big Bear Solar Observatory

NJIT Distinguished Professor Philip R. Goode and the Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) team have achieved “first light” using a deformable mirror in what is called adaptive optics at Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO). Using this equipment, an image of a sunspot was published yesterday on the website of Ciel et l’Espace, as the photo of the day: http://www.cieletespace.fr/node/5752

“This photo of a sunspot is now the most detailed ever obtained in visible light,” according to Ciel et l’Espace. In September, the publication, a popular astronomy magazine, will publish several more photos of the Sun taken with BBSO’s new adaptive optics system.

Goode said that the images were achieved with the 1.6 m clear aperture, off-axis New Solar Telescope (NST) at BBSO. The telescope has a resolution covering about 50 miles on the Sun’s surface.

The telescope is the crown jewel of BBSO, the first facility-class solar observatory built in more than a generation in the U.S. The instrument is undergoing commissioning at BBSO.

Since 1997, under Goode’s direction, NJIT has owned and operated BBSO, located in a clear mountain lake. The mountain lake is characterized by sustained atmospheric stability, which is essential for BBSO’s primary interests of measuring and understanding solar complex phenomena utilizing dedicated telescopes and instruments.

The images were taken by the NST with atmospheric distortion corrected by its 97 actuator deformable mirror. By the summer of 2011, in collaboration with the National Solar Observatory, BBSO will have upgraded the current adaptive optics system to one utilizing a 349 actuator deformable mirror.

With support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), Air Force Office of Scientific Research, NASA and NJIT, the NST began operation in the summer of 2009. Additional support from NSF was received a few months ago to fund further upgrades to this new optical system.

The NST will be the pathfinder for an even larger ground-based telescope, the Advanced Technology Solar Telescope (ATST), to be built over the next decade. NJIT is an ATST co-principal investigator on this NSF project. The new grant will allow Goode and partners from the National Solar Observatory (NSO) to develop a new and more sophisticated kind of adaptive optics, known as multi-conjugate adaptive optics (MCAO).

The new optical system will allow the researchers to increase the distortion-free field of view to allow for better ways to study these larger and puzzling areas of the Sun. MCAO on the NST will be a pathfinder for the optical system of NSO’s 4-meter aperture ATST coming later in the decade.

Scientists believe magnetic structures, like sunspots hold an important key to understanding space weather. Space weather, which originates in the Sun, can have dire consequences on Earth’s climate and environment. A bad storm can disrupt power grids and communication, destroy satellites and even expose airline pilots, crew and passengers to radiation.

The new telescope now feeds a high-order adaptive optics system, which in turn feeds the next generation of technologies for measuring magnetic fields and dynamic events using visible and infrared light. A parallel computer system for real-time image enhancement highlights it.

Goode and BBSO scientists have studied solar magnetic fields for many years. They are expert at combining BBSO ground-based data with satellite data to determine dynamic properties of the solar magnetic fields.

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102 thoughts on “First images from deformable mirror telescope at Big Bear

  1. The Swedish 1-m Solar Telescope also has adaptive optics and a resolution of 70 km on the solar surface…

  2. Remarkable photo, thanks for posting, Anthony! I’m really struck at the granularity of the photosphere and depth of contrast in the region surrounding the sunspot.
    Meanwhile, the sun continues to tease us….is it still in a minimum, or not?
    Spaceweather says: “Sunspot 1101 is big but quiet. Overall, solar activity is very low.”
    http://www.spaceweather.com/

  3. Kind of embarrassing for the UC’s that a New Jersey school is the one doing this work in their backyard. That said, that’s a very nice image that seems to show internal structure inside the dark spot. It’s very interesting to look at.

  4. What possible explanation is there for the vermiform radial structures in a plasma? Shouldn’t all the matter at those temperatures be unorganized. It looks like very palpable units of mass.

  5. “It’s not working, Mr Stibbons! Here’s that damn enormous fiery eye again!”
    – Archancellor Ridcully (Terry Pratchett’s Going Postal)

  6. Wow.
    And why is it we’re building space-based solar observatories if we can get quality images like this on Earth?
    Besides all the other-than-visible-light electromagnetic spectrum imagery and the marginal “early warning” benefit from placing such observatories closer to the Sun than Earth orbit, that is…

  7. The image is so clear it almost hurts the eye.
    But what it shows is also mind-boggling. For an engineer, form follows function. I see things and have pale guesses at what they DO, why they are the way they are. 50-mile resolution? So, even what we see has structures/functions at several layers down from what we see here. I live 25 miles from the Chicago Loop. The pixels are twice that. That little orange dot in the lower right black, it is more than a pixel.
    Each pebble is as big as a US state or a European country.
    Wow, what is going on?
    Progress, yes. So much to be able to learn. Better eyes to see with are essential. Let progress keep going forward.
    And last: A technical question – What sunspot is this?

  8. Amazing is an understatement. Do I understand correctly that it shows roughly a 50mile x 50mile area? I’m wondering about the exposure length – I believe what look like tightly packed stones around a scary black hole are in fact roiling convection cells. If this is so, the exposure would have had to have been pretty short to get such a crisp image.
    Could you (Anthony) find out?

  9. Hot D**n! Science can be soooo exciting when it’s being science. We have some really intelligent and creative scientists who are actually doing science.

  10. Someone is going to say it, so I might as well. That looks exactly like an [snip].
    [Let someone else say it. ~dbs, mod.]

  11. I can almost understand why the daft cold-sun-bright-surface idea can be believed when you can actually see the ‘dark’ interior!
    Well, maybe not…

  12. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    the marginal “early warning” benefit from placing such observatories closer to the Sun than Earth orbit, that is…
    Hmmm…. exactly how do the warnings get to Earth faster than light?

  13. This example answers the question of AO being able to boost resolution, but it does not tell much about detection.
    I’m sure if you put AO in front of projection you would increase resolution and detection limits.
    The link with the past is beyond salvation, at this point, without an exhuastive calibration run in parallel.
    Without such calibrations being performed, and out in the open, I must assume that the link (K factor) with the past is opaque.

  14. That is great.
    NJIT huh ? Good work.
    “And last: A technical question – What sunspot is this?”
    I believe from the other image linked that it would be “THE” sunspot, at the moment.

  15. Space weather, which originates in the Sun, can have dire consequences on Earth’s climate and environment. A bad storm can disrupt power grids and communication, destroy satellites and even expose airline pilots, crew and passengers to radiation.
    but not afffect the climate, according to AGW theory.
    Even though we keep finding more and more previously unconsidered aspects of how the sun functions but consider that the ‘science is settled’ as far as climate is concerned.

  16. Since 1997, under Goode’s direction, NJIT has owned and operated BBSO, located in a clear mountain lake. The mountain lake is characterized by sustained atmospheric stability, which is essential for BBSO’s primary interests of measuring and understanding solar complex phenomena utilizing dedicated telescopes and instruments.
    I wonder: Are there any weather instruments there, and if so, are there records available (raw data) which might be perused?
    I’d like to see a comparison to the various other places nearby, especially UHI susceptible locations.

  17. Anthony – thank you very much!!!
    PaddicJ: I believe the 50 mile resolution is the width of each pixel.
    Using the 3D Sun app on my iPhone I can see dark areas in one wavelength are bright in another, so the dark (visible light) center may be quite bright in other wavelengths. While I can’t say that the ‘shadows’ that give a 3D appearance on the sun’s surface are really shadows, I gather they are less bright due to the curvature of the terrain emitting the light toward the telescope – so the 3D look is real.
    Sauron lives….on the sun

  18. Gary Pearse says:
    August 25, 2010 at 12:46 pm:
    “What possible explanation is there for the vermiform radial structures in a plasma? Shouldn’t all the matter at those temperatures be unorganized. It looks like very palpable units of mass.”
    The radial structures look just like Mrs Smokey’s middle school science experiment using iron filings on a magnet with a thin sheet of plexiglas between them.

  19. @ AJ Abrams says:
    August 25, 2010 at 1:23 pm
    Someone is going to say it, so I might as well. That looks exactly like an [snip].
    [Let someone else say it. ~dbs, mod.]
    I’m someone else, and it DOES look just like one of those!

  20. This may not ‘amuse’ Dr. Svalgaard, but it is all in the interest of ‘science’. Using data from his file
    http://www.leif.org/research/spolar.txt
    for the sector magnetic field polarity, advancing by 3 days to synchronise it with the sun’s rotation, plotting the days of negative polarity against the solar longitude got an interesting coincidence with previously mentioned sun’s bump or as NASA would have it :
    THE SUN’S MAGNETIC FIELD HAS A GOOD MEMORY- Some deep internal structure in the sun must ultimately be responsible for these long-lived longitudinal effects, which appear to rotate rigidly with the sun.
    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/NFC13.htm

  21. Smokey says:
    August 25, 2010 at 2:34 pm
    “What possible explanation is there for the vermiform radial structures in a plasma? Shouldn’t all the matter at those temperatures be unorganized. It looks like very palpable units of mass.”
    The radial structures look just like Mrs Smokey’s middle school science experiment using iron filings on a magnet with a thin sheet of plexiglas between them.

    The magnetic field is indeed the great ‘structurer’ here.

  22. The Astronomers Who Stare at Goats!
    So.. I kinda get the flux lines around the hole, but what makes the pebble texture? They’re impressively large features that don’t seem to be getting distorted much by the spot.

  23. Stephen Brown said on August 25, 2010 at 2:38 pm:

    @ AJ Abrams says:
    August 25, 2010 at 1:23 pm
    Someone is going to say it, so I might as well. That looks exactly like an [snip].
    [Let someone else say it. ~dbs, mod.]
    I’m someone else, and it DOES look just like one of those!

    It certainly does, however I have found it’s best to just to peel the orange anyway to be sure, the fruit under the spot often is still good.

  24. AJ Abrams says:
    August 25, 2010 at 1:23 pm
    Someone is going to say it, so I might as well. That looks exactly like an [snip].
    [Let someone else say it. ~dbs, mod.]

    … arse
    There… done.

  25. Most excellent.
    Imagine that, science being done with actual observation. What? Not going the route of computer models? Blasphemy!
    (I know, I know, they probably use models, but only as a tool to aid their eyes, not replace them!)

  26. steveta_uk said on August 25, 2010 at 1:47 pm:

    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    the marginal “early warning” benefit from placing such observatories closer to the Sun than Earth orbit, that is…
    Hmmm…. exactly how do the warnings get to Earth faster than light?

    They don’t, however the theory is that by being closer to the Sun and keeping it under continual surveillance we can better detect when solar flares and other disruptive solar events are about to happen, thus get at least a few minutes of warning.
    However we have now learned that by simply monitoring the decay rate of manganese-54 we could get perhaps a day and a half of warning of solar flares, no observatory needed.
    See, told you it was marginal.

  27. My first thought was also Sauron but later I came to think of Alan Parsons Project:
    “I am the eye in the sky, looking at you…”

  28. 3×2 says:
    August 25, 2010 at 3:26 pm
    AJ Abrams says:
    August 25, 2010 at 1:23 pm
    Someone is going to say it, so I might as well. That looks exactly like an [snip].
    [Let someone else say it. ~dbs, mod.]
    … arse
    There… done.
    ——————————————————–
    So shortly speaking it is a solar fart in slow motion? 🙂

  29. This is so cool. You can almost feel yourself falling down the flux tube. What is amazing to me is that we are looking directly down it and it is black; no visible light is emerging. How far down does this tube go? Clearly down to the top of the optically opaque part of the Sun. Also, the flux tube must keep all matter out of it, otherwise it would be reflecting and refracting light from the sides of the tube; am I wrong in concluding that this tube keeps a perfect vacuumn inside it.
    It would be good to attempt a radar or lidar scan of a flux tube/Sun spot like this to determine how deep that layer was.

  30. Atomic Hairdryer @ August 25, 2010 at 2:50 pm

    So.. I kinda get the flux lines around the hole, but what makes the pebble texture?

    Mr Hairdryer, or may I call you Atomic?, I have been lead to believe, by Leif’s colleagues, that these are convection cells. Take a can of tomato soup, follow the instructions, and watch as it boils in a saucepan; notice the convection cells form?
    There are estimates of how deep the convection layer is, but I think it is pretty shallow, given their lateral dimensions.
    Leif?

  31. It is indeed a beautiful photo, but I don’t think it is really that groundbreaking. this photo from APOD back in November 2005 shows similar detail, although the new one does seem to have a bit tighter focus.
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap051106.html
    I vaguely recall linking to this APOD in a comment here, but I’m kind of tired right now and I wouldn’t swear to it.

  32. Robert of Ottawa says:
    August 25, 2010 at 7:12 pm
    There are estimates of how deep the convection layer is, but I think it is pretty shallow, given their lateral dimensions.
    The individual cells are only as deep as their lateral size, but they are like tiny bubbles in a very deep [200,000 km] convection zone.
    Here is a view of that spot by the Hinode spacecraft http://sun.stanford.edu/~kaorin/tmp_dir/NOAA11084.jpg at similar resolution.

  33. Dave Wendt,
    But your link is only 99.99798% as good as the new pic. Someone has to justify the $93,748,979,253 extra gov’t expenditure. So quit complaining, and appreciate the better resolution your additional tax money paid for!
    [/sarc]

  34. “This is so cool. You can almost feel yourself falling down the flux tube. What is amazing to me is that we are looking directly down it and it is black; no visible light is emerging. How far down does this tube go? ”
    I am pretty sure it is not a tube. More like a region expressing a line of magnetic force.
    And it isn’t really black. just dark compared to its surroundings.
    Still (literally) blindingly bright.
    How’d I do ?

  35. Robert of Ottawa says:
    August 25, 2010 at 6:35 pm
    What is amazing to me is that we are looking directly down it and it is black; no visible light is emerging.
    No, it is extremely bright, being many thousands of degrees hot. Only by contrast to the even brighter surrounding photosphere does it appear darker.
    How far down does this tube go?
    We don’t know precisely but it is likely to be a rather shallow affair.
    Also, the flux tube must keep all matter out of it, otherwise it would be reflecting and refracting light from the sides of the tube; am I wrong in concluding that this tube keeps a perfect vacuumn inside it.
    There is not a vacuum inside, but the density is a bit lower, because the magnetic field also exerts a pressure.

  36. Leif
    I posted a link to this
    http://www.physorg.com/news199591806.html
    on another thread, hoping to get the reactions of those commenters with more specific knowledge of the field than I possess. Unfortunately the tenor of the dialogue degenerated significantly soon after my post went up. When I saw you were commenting on the thread I hoped I could get your reaction to this concept. Are you aware of it and do you have any initial reaction.

  37. Dave Wendt says:
    August 25, 2010 at 8:24 pm
    Leif
    I posted a link to this
    http://www.physorg.com/news199591806.html
    on another thread, hoping to get the reactions of those commenters with more specific knowledge of the field than I possess. Unfortunately the tenor of the dialogue degenerated significantly soon after my post went up. When I saw you were commenting on the thread I hoped I could get your reaction to this concept. Are you aware of it and do you have any initial reaction.
    ———–
    This isn’t my core competence, but it is an interesting twist! The PDF of Shu’s paper can be downloaded here:
    http://arxiv.org/find/all/1/OR+au:Wun_Yi+all:+AND+EXACT+Wun_Yi+Shu/0/1/0/all/0/1

  38. I followed the link to the French site. There if you click on the photo you can see a higher resolution version of the image. Look at the lower left and lower right corners in that image and you’ll see very small black spots that almost look like either the start or end of a cluster of sunspots. The spots are unique to those corners the upper corners of the photo.
    Overall very cool – especially given how frequently I’ve driven past that observatory.

  39. I’ll post this again here (fixing a few typos) as an answer to those critics commenting that I am engaged in “wilds guesses” instead of “true science.”
    I am not a scientist. I am a music composer. But I happened to know, as any educated modern human being does, that the true scientific approach toward a bunch of competing theories requires that we pick the simplest one of those that fit observable experimental data and correctly predict new experimental data.
    In cosmology, such a theory is the curvature theory of the stable Universe. It doesn’t require any contrived additions to the general relativity, such as accelerated expansion, dark energy, dark matter, or creation disguised as a beginning of time. It postulates that the curvature of space-time itself interacts with photons moving through vast intergalactic distances, making them shed small amount of energy on the way. This simple and clear postulate allows for exact explanation of all observable cosmological phenomena, predicting all important parameters, such as Hubble’s constant, intensity of the cosmic microwave radiation, its temperature, etc., much better than the “mandatory” Big Bang dogma. It also explains many things that the more fashionable theories try to ignore and shrug off (such as Pioneer 10 blue shift effect).
    Big Bang theory (BBT) has established itself in modern cosmological circles for exactly the same reason that made the Anthropogenic Global Warming theory “mandatory” in the climatological community: conformism. Conformist’s mind doesn’t seek the truth, it wants to construct a theory, however cumbersome and implausible, that would satisfy, psychologically and financially, the greatest number of (influential) people, and antagonize the least amount of (influential) people. Hence the George Lemaître’s Big Bang. (He came up with it after several long and serious consultations in Vatican, disturbed by Einstein’s notion of the stable Universe with no beginning and no end.) BBT is the consensus theory. It has nothing in common with the factual truth.
    The wildest guess of all is to mistake consensus for reality.
    The most cowardly behavior of all is to aggressively defend the status quo.
    A voice of one calling in the desert: “OBJECTS ARE CLOSER THAN THEY APPEAR!” It is amazing that so many people read these words on their cars’ curved rear-view windows every day, and still don’t get it. When we look into the night’s starry skies, we look at the curved three-dimensional surface of the four-dimensional Universe, the same way we look at the curved two-dimensional surface of a rear-view mirror in the three-dimensional worlds. On both surfaces, the farther are the objects, the more the appearance that they are located at ever greater distances from us, the faster they seem to “run away.”
    P.S. On the lighter note:
    If we are to believe that, indeed, Christmas Eve
    Celebrates what, in fact, has been done,
    Then the time of Big Bang we could certainly hang
    Circa March 25, minus 1.

  40. Question for Leif, a little O/T and probably a bit simplistic for most here for which I apologise:
    Leif, on your TSI plot at http://www.leif.org/research/TSI-SORCE-2008-now.png
    the MF follows a fairly regular ‘saw tooth’ signal to the left. Two questions:
    1. What is the origin of the ‘saw tooth’ pattern?
    2. The emerging signal to the right is messy but seems to be slowly trying to assume the same shape, possibly reversed. What do previous minima look like on the same basis? Have you comparable plots available or failing that, could you point me to the source data you’re using? I’m guessing it’s probably a composite of several sites.
    Thanks.

  41. A wonder to behold.
    But imagine a video with same resolution.
    That would be even more spectacular.
    John

  42. Leif,
    What do you think this sun spot would like from the side, viewed along a tangent to the sun’s surface. Assuming you could get the same resolution/definition as this image has.
    John

  43. Alexander Feht says: (August 25, 2010 at 9:56 pm) I am not a scientist. I am a music composer.
    An impressive post, Alexander.

  44. AJB says:
    August 25, 2010 at 10:17 pm
    Question for Leif, a little O/T and probably a bit simplistic for most here for which I apologise:
    Leif, on your TSI plot at http://www.leif.org/research/TSI-SORCE-2008-now.png
    the MF follows a fairly regular ‘saw tooth’ signal to the left. Two questions:
    1. What is the origin of the ‘saw tooth’ pattern?
    Reply;
    correlates to the magnetic rotation of the sun, or the 27.32 day pattern of Lunar declinational culminations in phase.

  45. steveta_uk says:
    August 25, 2010 at 1:47 pm
    kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    the marginal “early warning” benefit from placing such observatories closer to the Sun than Earth orbit, that is…
    Hmmm…. exactly how do the warnings get to Earth faster than light?

    The interplanetary spacecraft and solar observatory provides observational positions, times, electromagentic wavelengths, and other opportunities not available to ground based solar observatories. The ground based solar observatories provide additinal observations and observational opportunities the interplanetary spacecraft solr obse4rvatories cannot presently include in their observation schedules.
    Although the any special warnings from solar observatory spacecraft in closer orbit around the Sun cannot transmit their observations faster than light to the Earth based researchers, they can provide some improved observations of special Solar events in advance of their occurrence, and they can transmit warnings of Solar radiation such as proton storms traveling through interplanetary space at speeds of one-third the speed of light. They can also monitor events which occur on the surface of nthe Sun faccing away from the Earth that are about to roatate towards the Earth and direct radiation towards the Earth.

  46. John Whitman says:
    August 25, 2010 at 10:33 pm
    “A wonder to behold.
    But imagine a video with same resolution.
    That would be even more spectacular.
    John”
    Videos can be found here:
    http://www.solarphysics.kva.se/
    Click on “Gallery” in the upper left.

  47. Ref – Dave Wendt says:
    August 26, 2010 at 12:57 am
    In a deeper vain, do you have a link that gives a picture/idea of the depth of sunspots like the one you cite; or that show in IR or UV or ? the spot in non-visable light? What we can see in the visable looks mighty deep; black-holeish.

  48. Dave Wendt says:
    August 26, 2010 at 12:57 am

    John Whitman says:
    August 25, 2010 at 10:41 pm
    Leif,
    What do you think this sun spot would like from the side, viewed along a tangent to the sun’s surface. Assuming you could get the same resolution/definition as this image has.
    John

    Here’s another APOD that shows this
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap070402.html

    ——————-
    Dave Wendt,
    Thanks for the link.
    John

  49. Dave Wendt says:
    August 25, 2010 at 8:24 pm
    When I saw you were commenting on the thread I hoped I could get your reaction to this concept. Are you aware of it and do you have any initial reaction.
    It is easy to construct theories along this line to explain the expansion. The problem is that there are many other pieces of evidence that are not explainable that way, e.g. the abundances of Helium, Deuterium, and Lithium, the Cosmic Microwave Background, and the positions of the acoustic peaks as function of linear separation, etc.
    AJB says:
    August 25, 2010 at 10:17 pm
    Leif, on your TSI plot at http://www.leif.org/research/TSI-SORCE-2008-now.png
    the MF follows a fairly regular ‘saw tooth’ signal to the left. Two questions:
    1. What is the origin of the ‘saw tooth’ pattern?
    2. The emerging signal to the right is messy but seems to be slowly trying to assume the same shape, possibly reversed.

    The MF signal is the average magnetic field of the central half of the solar disk. It goes up and down as the sun is rotating. And matches the field in the solar wind. We have measured this for a long time, e.g. http://wso.stanford.edu/#MeanField
    John Whitman says:
    August 25, 2010 at 10:41 pm
    What do you think this sun spot would like from the side, viewed along a tangent to the sun’s surface. Assuming you could get the same resolution/definition as this image has.
    something like this: http://www.ucar.edu/news/releases/2009/sunspotvisuals.shtml
    Roger Carr says:
    August 25, 2010 at 10:57 pm
    An impressive post, Alexander.
    But totally wrong, nevertheless.
    Richard Holle says:
    August 25, 2010 at 11:18 pm
    correlates to the magnetic rotation of the sun, or the 27.32 day pattern of Lunar declinational culminations in phase.
    Nothing to do with the Moon.

  50. long time lurker, first time poster…
    seeing this image makes me want to go back and rewatch “Sunshine”, one of my favorite “movies-that-no-one’s-ever-heard-of”. If you haven’t seen/heard of it, I’d recommend at least checking out a review or two. It’s an excellent Danny Boyle film.
    Anyway…love the site. Keep up the good work.

  51. Pascvaks says:
    August 26, 2010 at 5:50 am
    Ref – Dave Wendt says:
    August 26, 2010 at 12:57 am
    In a deeper vain, do you have a link that gives a picture/idea of the depth of sunspots like the one you cite; or that show in IR or UV or ? the spot in non-visable light? What we can see in the visable looks mighty deep; black-holeish.
    I don’t have a personal archive, although I do still have , a now faded copy, of the first photo I linked taped to my wall. I found the second with a simple sunspot search of the APOD archive. I highly recommend adding APOD to your bookmark list. The images are almost always fascinating and incredibly beautiful. It is one of the few things NASA has gotten right in the Hansen era. Here are some more images from my search that you may find pertinent.
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap060710.html
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap060611.html
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap050216.html
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap030624.html
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap021114.html
    http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/ap010419.html
    This site that Leif linked above also has a lot of good information
    http://www.ucar.edu/news/releases/2009/sunspotvisuals.shtml
    Leif Svalgaard says:
    August 26, 2010 at 10:24 am
    Dave Wendt says:
    August 25, 2010 at 8:24 pm
    Leif, thanks for taking the time to respond. I kind of thought it sounded to good to be true, but I’ve always hoped I’d stick around long enough to see another Kuhnian paradigm shift. The way things are going the lads and lassies need to get a move on.

  52. It is a fact that we do not understand the Sun. So we do not understand stars in general. Yes, we have complicated stories about them that have kept theoreticians happily engaged for centuries. But for so long as they convince themselves that they can ignore the electrical nature of all things in the universe their stories will be fiction. The electric force is the most powerful force in the universe, from which all other forces are derived, and it operates at all levels, from the subatomic to the galactic. When we understand the true electrical nature of our own star we will begin to understand the universe as it really is.
    Wal Thornhill

  53. Enneagram says:
    August 26, 2010 at 1:48 pm
    The electric force is the most powerful force in the universe, from which all other forces are derived
    is not even true. for starters it is the second most powerful force, and the other forces are not derived from it. Better educate Mr. Thornhill a bit.

  54. The problem is that there are many other pieces of evidence that are not explainable that way, e.g. the abundances of Helium, Deuterium, and Lithium, the Cosmic Microwave Background, and the positions of the acoustic peaks as function of linear separation, etc.
    Incorrect. Read up on Curvature Cosmology before lecturing others, Leif.

  55. Alexander Feht says:
    August 26, 2010 at 5:25 pm
    “the positions of the acoustic peaks as function of linear separation”
    Incorrect. Read up on Curvature Cosmology before lecturing others, Leif.

    How about you telling us how Curvature Cosmology accomplishes that?

  56. Alexander Feht says:
    August 26, 2010 at 8:59 pm
    No. You made a critical statement. You prove it.
    Sandbox fights are good for children.

    A text scan of the book http://www.davidcrawford.bigpondhosting.com/index_files/cc2.pdf does not find any references to the predicted abundances of Helium, Deuterium, and Lithium, nor any reference to the acoustic peaks. You said ‘incorrect’, so you show which pages explain this.
    On page 12, it says:
    “Curvature-cosmologymakes quite specific predictions that can be refuted. […] The galaxies and stars will evolve and eventually all their material will be returned to the cosmic plasma. Thus, a characteristic of curvature-cosmology is that although individual galaxies will be born, live and die, the overall population will be statistically the same for any observable characteristic.”
    This is refuted by the simple observation that the sun converts 4 million tons of material into radiation that is lost and never returns to become material again. The same holds true for any other star, so the Universe is steadily converting matter to radiation, meaning that if it is infinitely old, all matter would be long gone by now.
    The curvature-cosmology is a ‘tired-light-theory’. And does not predict [and is incompatible with] the observed time dilation of high-redshift supernova light curves. http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0104382 The time-dilation is a consequence of the standard interpretation of the redshift: a nearby supernova that takes 20 days to decay takes 40 days to decay at redshift z=1.
    The book is riddled with similar errors, e.g. its treatment of the neutrino ‘problem’. too many errors to dwell on.

  57. This is refuted by the simple observation that the sun converts 4 million tons of material into radiation that is lost and never returns to become material again. The same holds true for any other star, so the Universe is steadily converting matter to radiation, meaning that if it is infinitely old, all matter would be long gone by now.
    It is very strange to hear this from a scientist. Radiation and matter are two mutually convertible forms of energy. In both infinite and closed models of the Universe, every radiated photon is eventually absorbed and becomes matter.
    Crawford does explain, how and why heavier elements become hydrogen in various forms and helium (lithium being a stable transitional stage) in a process that make these elements prevailing in the Universe. It seems that you have never read his book; otherwise, you wouldn’t claim that Curvature Cosmology doesn’t explain one of its most basic, experimentally proved tenets.
    As to “acoustic peaks,” I’ve never heard this argument before, and it will take time for me to research the meaning of your argument, if it has any.
    I will not waste my life by engaging in “reference and citation” verbal wars. If you really understand something that I don’t, it shouldn’t be too difficult for you to explain it in several clear and logical sentences, without relying on external authority.
    If, on the other hand, you don’t really understand the subject but want to create an impression that others are incapable of grasping your wisdom, you would condescendingly mention this or that phenomenon, refer to this or that authority by reference in passing, and make NLP conclusions without really connecting the dots. For this, I don’t have time.

  58. Alexander Feht says:
    August 26, 2010 at 11:20 pm
    It is very strange to hear this from a scientist. Radiation and matter are two mutually convertible forms of energy. In both infinite and closed models of the Universe, every radiated photon is eventually absorbed and becomes matter.
    Absorbed photons do not become matter. Simple as that.
    Crawford does explain, how and why heavier elements become hydrogen in various forms and helium
    no, he postulates that. doesn’t explain anything.
    The curvature-cosmology is a ‘tired-light-theory’. And does not predict [and is incompatible with] the observed time dilation of high-redshift supernova light curves. http://arxiv.org/abs/astro-ph/0104382 The time-dilation is a consequence of the standard interpretation of the redshift: a nearby supernova that takes 20 days to decay takes 40 days to decay at redshift z=1.
    As to “acoustic peaks,” I’ve never heard this argument before, and it will take time for me to research the meaning of your argument, if it has any.
    http://www.leif.org/EOS/PHTOAD000061.pdf
    Sorry, Crawford’s book is junk, and you have been taken in.

  59. Leif, I was talking to a solar researcher the other day at my university, and he said the bright faculae around sunspots didn’t account for the energy difference between the cooler spot and the hotter surroundings. Do you agree, and if so, where is the energy going? Is it heading outwards along with the solar wind, or looping back through coronal holes to the neighbouring spot of opposite polarity. Or sometimes one, sometimes the other?

  60. tallbloke says:
    August 27, 2010 at 12:44 am
    the bright faculae around sunspots didn’t account for the energy difference between the cooler spot and the hotter surroundings.
    It is very difficult to communicate correctly. What he mean is that the difference is not channeled over to the faculae. The faculae have their own energy output which is actually twice the sunspot deficit. The cooling of the spot just means that the outward flow of energy is spread over a larger area. It gets out eventually, no funny looping or strange contortions.

  61. Sorry, Crawford’s book is junk, and you have been taken in.
    I am sure Dr. Crawford would say the same thing about your wild guesses, Dr. Svalgaard. BBT has many more weaknesses than CCT, and you know it.

  62. P.S.
    One of the most famous examples of the mutual convertibility of radiation and matter is Einstein-Bose effect, where atoms become waves, and waves become atoms again.
    And, the last time I’ve heard, photons were constantly absorbed by matter, resulting in higher-energy states of the particle having mass — therefore, becoming part of the matter. You literally refuse to see what is happening n your eyes, Dr. Svalgaard.

  63. Alexander Feht says:
    August 28, 2010 at 2:59 am
    One of the most famous examples of the mutual convertibility of radiation and matter is Einstein-Bose effect, where atoms become waves, and waves become atoms again.
    The ‘waves’ are not radiation but refer to the wave-structure of matter.
    And, the last time I’ve heard, photons were constantly absorbed by matter, resulting in higher-energy states of the particle having mass
    And are promptly re-emitted. So listen again.

  64. Alexander: Have some respect. You are a music composer talking to a physicist. Imagine how you’d feel if Leif came onto you patch and waxed lyrical about what a load of bolox Benjamin Britten is in particular and classical music is in general with all the bravado of distinguished conductor.

  65. I think that the sunspot looks like a neatly sewn drainhole on the pocket of my Jeep jungle shirt. With a little bit of imagination I can see some excess material from pierced hole rolled up under the bottonhole stiching. The seamstress made a bad job of matching the colour of the botton hole stiches with colour of the pocket, and maybe the darker colour of the stiches can be attibuted to the fact that die used in the sewing cotton is more colour fast than the cotton used in the weaving of the pocket.
    Sorry, Leif, but the discussion between you and Alexander is way beyond my payscale.

  66. Loodt Pretorius says:
    August 30, 2010 at 10:07 am
    Sorry, Leif, but the discussion between you and Alexander is way beyond my payscale.
    His too, I think. Sadly it had deteriorated into semi-religious nonsense [BB invented by Catholic Priest, etc]. Luckily, it has subsided [for now] as it should as being O/T.

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