Other astronomy activities
Discover the light side of the sun!
The project Sun4all allows students from all over the world to work with real solar images and accomplish scientific results.
Sun4All proposes 7 different activities using digitized solar images, for different ranges of ages - from the simple counting of sunspots to an elaborate determination of the solar rotation period.
Sun4All rests on the asset of solar images obtained at the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Coimbra (Portugal) for 80 years, which are being digitized and made available to anyone via internet.
As a result of over 80 years of daily solar observations that started in 1926, the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Coimbra has more than 30 000 images of the Sun (spectroheliograms). A program to digitize all these images and make them available to all Portuguese and foreign students is already halfway through - 15 000 images can already be accessed with a browser!
A guidebook that includes an introduction to solar physics and a short historical description of the solar observations at the Astronomical Observatory of the University of Coimbra is in this file:
The Sun4All team has prepared a set of 7 activities for students that use the digitized solar images:
1- Counting sunspots on various days. (Target: high school students)
2- Eleven-year cycle. (Target: 11 - 15 yr)
3- Eleven-year cycle of solar activity in other spectroheliograms. (Target: high school students)
4- The solar rotation film. (Target: 11 - 15 yr)
5- Sunspots versus climatic indexes. (Target: high school students)
6- Determining prominences dimensions. (Target: 11 - 15 yr)
7- Determination of the solar rotation period. (Target: high school students)
All activities are fully described in this file: sun4allactivities 497.83 Kb.
You can find useful informations in the appendixes files
Appendix 1 - How to access the solar images archive
Appendix 2 - How to use the application Paint to invert colors of spectroheliograms
Appendix 3 - How to use the application Excel to insert and analyze data
Appendix 4 - How to use SalsaJ for activities 1, 4 and 6.
Other useful files:
Excel file for activity 1 Counting sunspots: counting_sunspots 14.50 Kb
Excel file for activity 2 11-year cycle: 11year_cycle 14.00 Kb
Excel file for activity 5 Sunspots versus temperature/pressure: sunspots_temperature_pressure 14.50 Kb
Excel file for activity 7 Solar rotation: solar_rotation 15.00 Kb
Excel file with values of the average atmospheric pressure (mmHg) and average temperature (ºC) measured in Coimbra from 1995 to 2005 - Data from the Geophysics Institute of the University of Coimbra: geophysical_institute-data 154.00 Kb
You can also visit the Sun4All-Homepage .
The project Sun4All was funded by Ciência Viva.