This solar imagery is acquired and processed by Dr Malcolm Wilkinson at the Forest Hill Observatory (FHO) in Victoria.

The white-light image below is a full disc image of the solar photosphere showing sunspots, typical limb darkening and sometimes faculae near the limb of the Sun. The date-time label refers to Universal Time (UT or Z) and is of the form yyyymmdd hhmmss. The image resolution is 1024 x 1024 pixels. Higher resolution imagery from which these images are derived may be available on application to the ASA (<>).

White light full disc solar image

The image below is an H-alpha image of the solar chromosphere as a full-disc. It shows quite different detail than that shown in a photospheric image. In particular it gives detail about the chromospheric magnetic fields that align the filaments and fibril structure seen at the H-alpha wavelength.

The H-alpha wavelength is also the one that is most typically used to monitor solar flares. These high intensity transient brightenings are caused when large quantities of magnetic energy are released around active regions (typically around sunspot groups). The lower brightness white areas often seen in H-alpha images are termed plage.

H-alpha full disc

The images below show zoomed highlights taken from full disc images.

H-alpha detail 1 H-alpha detail 2

ASAAustralian Space Academy