Tagged Questions

The Sun is an almost perfectly symmetric yellow dwarf star [spectral class G2V] which is at the center of our Solar System.

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3answers
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Solar Eclipse Viewing

I know it is not safe when viewing a solar eclipse to look directly at the sun. I know you can purchase solar eclipse glasses online but how do you make your own solar eclipse glasses that are safe to ...
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2answers
618 views

Could a solar flare cause the Earth's magnetic poles to reverse?

With all the hype of the impending "2012 Mayan doomsday" I was thinking it might be interesting to see what principles of physics prevent the theories of doomsday from occurring. One overarching ...
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1answer
2k views

What is actually meant by 'sun set' and 'sun rise' times, when taking into account the mirage due to light bending in the atmosphere

I’ve heard from the likes of Brian Cox that what we see of the sun during a sunset and sun rise is actually the mirage of the sun. The Sun has actually set/risen and we see it due to the way light is ...
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2answers
508 views

Why don't we see solar and lunar eclipses often?

Since we see the new moon at least once in a month when the Moon gets in between of the Sun and the Earth during the evening ( and as far as I know if this happens during the day, you'll get to see a ...
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1answer
3k views

Why don't we see solar and lunar eclipses often? [duplicate]

Since we see the new moon at least once in a month when the Moon gets in between of the Sun and the Moon at the night and as far as I know if this happens during the day, you'll get to see a solar ...
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2answers
565 views

What's the reason for the seasons?

In the diagram, it shows that the fundamental reason for different seasons is when the northern hemisphere is titled towards the sun there's summer in northern hemisphere and winter in southern ...
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2answers
395 views

How to calculate the amount of night time during a flight?

I have been asked to find a way to calculate the amount of time that a flight takes during night time. So far, I have the departure latitude and longitude and the time of takeoff, the arrival ...
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1answer
99 views

Neutrino beam energy

Neutrino is one of the most mysterious particles in todays physics. Even when values of some parameters like for example mass associated with it are not known (or there is great range of possible ...
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2answers
59 views

Can I determine whether it is night at a location by calculating only the sun's elevation?

There are many formulas for determining sunrise and sunset times for locations, but for my application I only need to know if it is day or night (given a time, latitude and longitude). After studying ...
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1answer
1k views

How to determine day/night based on latitude, longitude and a date/time?

Is there a simple method of determining, given a UTC date/time, whether it is day or night at a given lat/long coordinate? I am currently using a formula based on a Sunrise/Sunset Algorithm from the ...
3
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1answer
74 views

Can CMEs disturb a planet orbit?

Yesterday (March 6), a massive X-class solar flare erupted from the Sun. I was wondering if this kind of solar flares can affect in some way the orbit of a planet if aimed directly. Let's say, for ...
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1answer
60 views

What is the weekly average of coronal mass ejections the sun sends out?

What is the average number of coronal mass ejections that the sun sends out each week, including those that are not directed towards Earth?
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0answers
94 views

Proton flux model or data at energy range up to 100 keV

I am looking for a model or at best the database of proton fluxes (solar p+) at a energy range of some eV up to 100 keV. I have already found the SOHO database: http://umtof.umd.edu/pm/ But the ...
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0answers
94 views

Was Aristarchos' method to compute Earth-Sun distance ever rediscovered in medieval or modern times?

Ancient Greek astronomer Aristarchos who lived around 300 BC found a method to compute the Eart-Sun distance by applying geometry. In this video about the cosmic distance ladder, at 26:30, Terence ...
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1answer
191 views

What is the Correlation Between Solar Wind Velocity/Density and Sunspot Count?

We have the Advanced Composition Exporer (ACE), which orbits in the L1 libration point as a source for solar wind velocity and density (particles/cm^3) data. Typically, at a velocity in the range of ...
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3answers
336 views

Sunspots formula

I used the package 'EUREQA', version Formulize, to analyse the monthly smoothed sunspot timeseries from 1750 till 2010. It gives me a simple formula, with 8 coefficients, that match data with a ...
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3answers
1k views

Does the sun cross over a given meridian line every day at the same time?

Let's say I have an imaginary meridian line over new york going from north to south. I know that the sun will not always be exactly on top of my head here in New York, but every day it will have to ...
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6answers
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Is it safe to observe the sun through binoculars with welding glass in front? [closed]

I asked this on Reddit but didn't get much of a response. So here goes! I'm looking for low-cost ways to observe the Transit of Venus this summer. Since I'll only be able to see a few hours of it ...
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6answers
2k views

The Sun Can Make Stuff Hotter Than Itself

We intuitively understand the direction that energy travels -- from the thing with energy to the thing with less energy. That's why the second law of thermodynamics is among the first things you learn ...
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5answers
435 views

sun-moon-earth anomaly

When one looks at the sun and the moon in the sky together, why is it that the illuminated crescent of the moon does NOT "point" at the sun? (More correctly the perpendicular bisector of the straight ...
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1answer
439 views

Steady State Temperature of an Object Orbiting the Earth

This may be irrelevant or stupid to ask but I couldn't come up with a good answer. At least, we could not agree on with my friend the other day. I would like an estimate of the temperature of a human ...
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1answer
359 views

What proportion of a star's hydrogen is consumed in its life?

I've heard in a lecture that a star like the sun would burn 3% of its Hydrogen before expiring. I would have thought it would be much more.
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4answers
414 views

Is there a way to create an artificial solar eclipse?

I heard this story, where they celebrated the birthday of the now defunct North Korean dictator Kim Il-sung in the 1970s and as a birthday present they created through some very complex artillery ...
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1answer
89 views

Is there an Algorithm to find the time when the sun is X degrees above the horizon for a given latitude B at date C

Is there an accurate algorithm / method to determine the precise time of day/night when the sun is X degrees above (or below) the horizon for a given latitude Y at date Z? Is this the same question ...
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2answers
91 views

Lumped circuit model of Earth and Sun as a thermal system

I want to design a thermal model of the Sun heating up the Earth. The circuit below is my own design (I don't know if there is a better way to model it. If there is, please tell me.). I want to ...
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1answer
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Why can there be fire in space while there is no oxygen?

The sun is made of fire but fire needs oxygen right? So.. Why can there be flames in space, while there's no oxygen? Same idea as with the rocket engines of the spaceship, which also produce fire ...
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4answers
670 views

The Sun as a gravitational lens

Since the Sun is a gravitational lens with as focal length of 550 AU for visible light, with an immense amplification factor, shouldn't it light up objects hanging out there? We should get solar ...
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1answer
50 views

Transit of Mercury: how did he see it?

On November 7, 1631 Pierre Gassendi saw the transit of Mercury across the face of the Sun. How did he see it? I mean what instrument was used to reduce the apparent brightness of the Sun?
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2answers
136 views

Is there any way to anticipate exceptional Aurora Borealis viewing conditions?

I've always wanted to see the Aurora Borealis, but never had the opportunity, since it is so rarely visible in my area (Pennsylvania). However, last week was apparently a rare opportunity of ...
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1answer
152 views

Why isn't sunset time in sync with solstice?

The winter solstice in the Northern Hemisphere in 2011 is on December 22. But if I look at the sunset times for a location such as Washington, DC on the USNO site, the sunset time starts reversing ...
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1answer
458 views

Reverse Sun position algorithm?

To find the sun's position (elevation, azimuth) we can use many algorithms including the PSA algorithm. These algorithm share the fact that the input is the local time, longitude and latitude and the ...
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2answers
508 views

Why is the sun so dense?

Looking at the radius and mass of stars on Wikipedia, I see that the Sun is the densest of all, often many times denser than other stars. Is that because only non-dense starts are easily seen from a ...
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1answer
109 views

Get time from sun Azimuth

I want to know if I can determine the time where the sun's azimuth is at a given value. In other words, I want a function that takes the sun azimuth along with longitude or time zone and outputs the ...
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1answer
647 views

Is there a simple yet accurate formula for where on Earth the Sun and Moon are directly overhead?

I'm trying to improve a site that shows the region of the Earth currently under daylight, and I need a formula that, given the current time, tells where (latitude/longitude) the sun and moon are ...
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3answers
3k views

Why is moonlight less colourful than yellow light?

Just what the title states; and this isn't an original question ... On full-moon, moonlight is almost as bright as mid-dawn ; yet there is hardly any colour visible. This is not the case with ...
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3answers
557 views

Are planetary orbits measured from the Sun's surface or centre?

I would imagine planetary orbits are measured from the Sun's centre and not its surface. Is that true? I can't find anywhere that actually states this.
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1answer
691 views

How to calculate how many degrees the Sun is from the horizon?

Given a position on earth (latitude/longitude, and maybe also height relative to sea-level) and a time, what's the algorithm to find how many degrees the Sun is from the horizon? And the same for ...
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2answers
386 views

How much of the Earth would a spoonful of the Sun scorch?

How much of the Earth would a spoonful of the Sun scorch if held at ground level? I basically would like to conceptualize the heat of the Sun on a smaller scale, please.
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4answers
491 views

Is solar wind positively charged?

Many times I heared that the solar wind consists of protons and alpha particles. The both are positively charged, but are there electrons in solar wind?
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3answers
1k views

Is a water world possible, and for how long could it be stable?

I have several questions regarding this topic. First, could a water world be stable for thousands of years with most of its surface remaining covered in water. What would it take for this to be ...
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1answer
271 views

Suns emission spectrum

I learnt that in astrophysical spectroscopy, the emission spectrum of distant stars is used to determine what they're made of. So why is it that our own Sun is emitting the whole spectrum ? (or is ...
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3answers
82 views

Distribution of each element and molecule as a function of distance from the Sun and as a function of time

Are there any graphs that show the distribution of each element and molecule as a function of distance from the Sun? And maybe even the time-evolution of each distribution over the solar system's ...
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3answers
5k views

How fast will the sun become a red giant?

I've read many accounts of our sun's distant fate, but what I've never heard is on what time scale these events occur. For instance, when the sun runs out of hydrogen, I presume it doesn't just WHAM! ...
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1answer
507 views

Equation for calculating the Sun's position

SunPosition Calculator calculates the Sun's postion based on the location and time. What is the equation used for such a calculation?
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2answers
369 views

Hydrogen as a fuel in Sun

The source of Sun's incessant energy is hydrogen; which is continuously converting to helium through nuclear fusion reaction releasing energy. Why does not all hydrogen convert into helium in one big ...
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1answer
46 views

Refraction and scattered light for NLCs

For helping with judging NLC candidates (are they NLC or not) I have a set of formulas to calculate the minimum altitude (in km) of the candidate given an observed altitude (in degrees) of the ...
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4answers
6k views

Why is a new moon not the same as a solar eclipse?

Forgive the elementary nature of this question: Because a new moon occurs when the moon is positioned between the earth and sun, doesn't this also mean that somewhere on the Earth, a solar eclipse ...
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2answers
294 views

Effect of gravitation on light

Einstein predicted that the gravitational force can act on light. This was verified in one solar eclipse that light from a star near to the sun's disc bent due to Sun's gravity as predicted. Since ...
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1answer
166 views

Will the sun cool and produce a disrupting EMP?

Scientists say rare drop in sunspot activity could cause global cooling http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/business-tech/science/110615/science-news-solar-flares-sunspots-global-warming ...
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2answers
2k views

Are dangerous rays emitted during Solar Eclipse?

It is said one should avoid staring at Sun as it can damage the eyes, but it is also said that one should not come out in sun during eclipse as it emits dangerous rays. Is that true? If yes, why?