OT: Astronomy Question

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WAC_Hal

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Are there any of you all that do amature star gazing?

I'm thinking of getting a solar filter for my six inch Newtonian scope in preparation for the total eclipse coming up on August 21, 2017. So far I see there are two types of filters: hydrogen alpha filter (really expensive), or a solar white light filter (not so expensive).

Have any of you had experience with either of these filters? I have gazed through the alpha filter a time or two, but noticed it falsely colors the image red. I have not had the opportunity to look through a white light filter.
 

Charles_McG

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I've used a white light filter on both a C8 and a C14. It is essentially a mirror that lets you see the photosphere. Sunspots and granulation.

I've also used a narrow band H-alpha filter on the C14. One narrow enough that it had its own temperature control to keep it at the right wavelength. A broadband filter went on the end of the scope and the narrow band filter went between the prime focus and the eyepiece. It's alpha Lyman line of fluorescing hydrogen (IIRC). That's not false color - it's the sun in one very particular color. The granulation looks different, and in particular, you can see the prominences on the limb of the sun.

We're headed toward solar minimum - the sun has been boring lately.
 
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