Technical Helpline: +44 (0) 7919 280957
Customer Services: +44 (0) 1525 852696
with a range of Celestron telescopes and white-light solar products from Baader Planetarium
We are now leading up to the Summer Solstice which will occur on Saturday 20 June 2020 at 21:43 GMT (22:43 BST). With the Sun being high in the sky over the next few months now is a great time to start exploring our nearest star.
PLEASE NOTE: Never look at the Sun directly either through a telescope or with the unprotected naked eye as you will be blinded. Always use a suitable reputable Solar filter accessory such as the Baader AstroSolar filter.
The Sun is very important to us here on Earth as it gives light and the heat that is necessary for life to exist. Our Sun is what also powers our climate and weather and it also has other effects on our atmosphere. The Sun is an easy celestial object to observe because it is so bright in the sky and it appears daily making it an “easy find”.
Studying our Sun safely with a telescope, pair of binoculars or a spotting scope can be very rewarding as our Sun is a very active and dynamic star meaning you can sometimes see changes over periods of hours or days. Solar observing with a suitable filter is also not expensive and is therefore a great way to start your Solar journey of discovery.
Here are some facts about the Sun that may amaze you:
The Solar granulation is an ever present feature of the Sun’s surface (photosphere) even in the absence of Sunspots and gives the Solar disc a mottled granular texture. Solar granule are the tops of convection cells where hot fluid rises up from the Solar interior in the bright areas, and then spreads outwards across the surface, cool and descend which give their darker boundaries. A Solar granule can be larger in diameter than the United Kingdom and live only briefly, for between 8 to 20 minutes.
Sunspots appear as “dark spots” on the surface (photosphere) of our Sun. They appear dark because they are relatively cool compared to the rest of the photosphere. The average temperature of the Sun’s photosphere is ~5500°C, with the Sunspots being ~1500 degrees cooler. The magnetic field in a sunspot can be 1000 times stronger than in the surrounding area and these strong magnetic fields prevent some of the heat from within the Sun reaching the surface leading to a cooler area.
Solar Faculae (Latin for “small torches”) are extended bright granular structured areas which are slightly hotter than the surrounding photosphere. They are usually, and most easily, seen near the edge (limb) limb of the solar disk where the photosphere appears dimmer due to limb darkening. A sunspot can have an associated facula, but faculae may also appear on their own in regions away from sunspots and may indicate the formation of new Sunspot groups.
Use your 6″ SCT or 8″ SCT/EdgeHD telescope to observe or image the Sun safely using Celestron’s EclipSmart Solar filters.
With this filter attached to the telescope you will get a yellow-Sun coloured view that is pleasing to the eye and will be able to observe and image features such as Sunspots and granulation. The filters are easy to fit on the telescope and come with Velcro fixings to keep the filter in place on the telescope for added safety.
Enhance your Solar viewing experience with the Celestron EclipSmart solar filters. With two Velcro straps and four self-adhesive Velcro pads for added safety, you can be assured that the solar filter cannot be accidentally knocked off and will provide Solar Safe, ISO compliant viewing
EclipSmart solar products feature Solar Safe filter technology providing the ultimate protection from harmful solar radiation, including both IR and UV light, and filters 99.999% of visible light. Celestron Solar Safe filter technology is GUARANTEED SAFE for direct solar observation and has been independently tested by SAI Global Assurance Services.
Solar Safe products conform to and meet the transmission requirements of ISO 12312-2, Filters for Direct Observation of the Sun, EN 1836:2005 + A1:2007 (E) for an E15 Filter for the Direct Observation of the Sun and, AS/NZS 1338.1:2012, Filters for Eye Protectors.
|Filter clear aperture||128.5mm (6" SCT version) | 176mm (8" SCT/EdgeHD version)|
|Filter diameter (external)||184mm (6" SCT version) | 235mm (8" SCT/EdgeHD version)|
|Filter diameter (internal)||174mm (6" SCT) | 225mm (8" SCT/EdgeHD version)|
|Filter material||Scratch resistant polymer produced by American Paper Optics|
|Nylon safety straps||Two 1” x 4” Velcro straps, Four 1” x 1” Velcro Tabs|
|Telescope Compatibility||Celestron 8” Schmidt-Cassegrain and EdgeHD Telescopes|
|Weight||74g/2.6oz (6" SCT) | 121g/4.2oz (8" SCT/Edge HD)|
Below are a small selection of some of the popular 6″ and 8″ SCT/EdgeHD Celestron telescopes that can be used with the EclipSmart Solar filters or Baader AstroSolar white-light or ready made filters.
Solar Observing with other Celestron Telescopes If you own a different Celestron (or other brand) telescope, such as an AstroMaster reflector or refractor, the new NexStar 102 SLT or a 9.25″ SCT/EdgeHD , or have binoculars or a spotting scope, then we recommend Baader Planetarium AstroSolar film, or their ready made filters, for Solar study. You can find these products on our Baader Planetarium UK website here. If you are unsure about what you need please contact us and we will be happy to help.
A way of observing or imaging the Sun in white light safely is to use a suitable a high quality objective-end Solar filter to reduce the amount of light entering the telescope to a safe level. Baader have their AstroSolar Solar film for this purpose. The AstroSolar film and ready made filters are available in:
- ND5.0 version for visual/photographic use
- ND3.8 version for imaging purposes only.
The AstroSolar film can be ordered in different sized sheets for you to make your own Solar filter holder. The film is also available pre-mounted in a range of different sized aluminium housings that is “ready to go” straight onto your telescope, binocular, spotting scope or camera lens.
These filter accessories can help enhance your viewing or imaging of our Sun. They are only to be used with either the Baader AstroSolar film, ready-made AstroSolar filters or the Baader Herschel wedge. They must not be used on their own. Please refer to their instructions for use or please contact us if you need further information or advice if you are unsure.
The Baader Herschel Wedge allows sharp Solar observation or photography in white light. A special heat absorbing ceramic plate – similar to the space shuttle heat tiles – on the rear of the unit traps radiant heat without heating the surrounding housing. It also acts as a useful “Solar finder” too.
With a suitable Solar safety accessory in place, why not record images of the Sun quickly and easily with your smartphone using the Celestron NexYZ adaptor or compact camera using the quick and easy to use Baader Microstage II Digiscoping adaptor.
Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter and check out our regular David Hinds Ltd blogs too.
Why not find out more about the other range of products we sell including Baader Planetarium, Celestron, 10Micron, PlaneWave … and more.
Subscribe to our David Hinds Ltd newsletter
Subscribe to our Celestron newsletter
Subscribe to our Baader Planetarium newsletter
Subscribe to our 10Micron newsletter