January 4th was a busy day for me. I woke up at 8 pm, got ready and went to the Ontario Science Centre (OSC) at 9:30 am.
I went to the OSC because the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada (RASC) was hosting an event there. It was a solar observation event. I went to the event to gain experience in the field of Solar Observation.
I arrived there at 10 am. There, I saw a two astronomers with three telescopes set up. One telescope had a Hydrogen-Alpha filter, which blocks out most of the light, leaving only the red emission spectrum line visible. Another telescope used a regular eyepiece that used a white light filter. A third telescope did not have an eyepiece, but it projected the image of the sun onto a piece of cardboard for public viewing of the sun without putting your eye in an eyepiece. In addition, we had two solar observation glasses. The first one used the white-light filter, and the other one, which I brought from home, used black polymer which made the sun appear orange-yellow rather than white.
A total of three astronomers from RASC were there. From 10 – 12 pm, we braved the cold of winter to show the public the sun and to get them curious about astronomy. We had many visitors, including a few members of RASC.
The Sun as viewed from the white-light telescope.
Overall, we had a successful event. Many people braved the cold for just a few extra minutes to witness the majesty of the sun. This event gave me experience in the field of Solar observation, which I can take home and apply it in my astronomical sessions in the future. I hope to do so soon.