I had a few hours free today, and after seeing the solar activity shown on Spaceweather.com I decided to break out the solar filters and scope and start my solar season. After checking out the local weather radar I figured I had about and hour or two before the thunderstorms hit my area. I initally did some visual observations and did not see much. Then I switched to my Meade Electronic Eyepiece, adjusted the contrast, and saw some nice surface features. I managed to capture some video of this “sun-hot spot” which was seen on the top third of the disk. It’s not much, but at least I got to try out the solar filters, image gathering equipment, and brush up on my processing techniques. What better than to work on a solar image that you had shot a few hours ago, while thunderstorms roll over your house.
According to NOAA and NASA Solar Cycle 24 will start picking up in late 2009 and peak in 2013. I hope this is the first of many images that I can process this season. Clear Skies!!!