A new image taken by NJIT Distinguished Professor Philip R. Goode and the Big Bear Solar Observatory (BBSO) team is the most detailed sunspot photo yet. In September, the popular astronomy publication, Ciel et l’Espace will publish more photos of the Sun taken using 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.
In the center is a dark sunspot, that is to say a colder zone, less brilliant than the rest of the solar surface. The temperature is around 3600 ° C. All around, the mosaic of small cells is called granulation (temperature: about 5800 ° C). On an average size of 1000 km, these cells are made of hot gas rising from inside the Sun.