The Nightly News
An Astronomy blog by Joe Bauman, Salt Lake City
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  1. Blog 21: Sunspots
    07 Jul, 2017
    Blog 21: Sunspots
    If I had to make a prediction about next month’s total solar eclipse, it would be a cautious one that the corona will be thick around the Sun’s equator and thin at the poles. The reason involves sunspots. These are transitory dark splotches on the Sun, places where the magnetic field pushes through the photosphere. The photosphere is the Sun’s visible surface, a layer only about 60 miles deep -- a thin skin compared with our star’s diameter of 870,000 miles. Sunspots, which have magnetic
  2. Blog 19: "It'll take your breath away"
    17 Jun, 2017
    Blog 19: "It'll take your breath away"
    Every day we live with our local star, sometimes squinting at it for a moment at noon, often watching it set amid glorious pastels in the evening, occasionally aware of its shimmer through rainclouds during storms -- but how many have truly seen the sun? Its strange arches called prominences and the whitish atmosphere of beyond-scalding-hot gas extend far past the dazzling disk, but we almost never observe them because sunlight is so powerful that it completely hides these other

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