University Lowbrow Astronomers

Astronomy Pictures of the Sun [Image 12]

This page contains images of the sun produced by members of the University Lowbrow Astronomers.

The Partial Solar Eclipse of May 20, 2012
by Jack Brisbin, John Causland & Mark Knopper

Partial Solar Eclipse

Hey, Everyone,

We got about 15 minutes viewing of the eclipse—you should have been there! (The best view of the solar eclipse was in the Western United States, but a partial eclipse was visible for viewers in Southeast Michigan between 8:21PM and 8:56PM). Jack Brisbin and I set up his spotting scope with solar filter and my Coronado 60. We also had my solar filtered binocs and others came prepared. The photo above was taken by Jack with a Olympus 4 meg Digital camera through his telescope.

Partial Solar Eclipse

Mark Knopper took the photo above through Jack’s scope.


Merry came with welders helmet that she got for the 91 annular eclipse and has also seen 3 full eclipses. With so many passer’s by, we were able to show perhaps 40 or more folks the eclipse.

Ashley Street

We had set up on Ashley Street in downtown Ann Arbor, Michigan. The photo above shows the group observing on Ashley by the parking lot entrance. You can see the tripod legs but the scope is lost behind a bush.

This is a great location for the Venus transit! I was concerned that we weren’t getting quite enough sunset horizon. As it turns out, we had way more than enough. The atmospheric horizon haze, as began to show below, grabbed the bottom half of the sun, depriving us of the last 10 or so minutes. Only at 40000 feet might we have avoided that. Much of the country was clouded out, so we were quite fortunate. With the city’s surface parking lot next to us, it made for easy parking and quite a good amount of foot traffic. Why hide away at Leslie for hours on end when you can share the views?

Jack and His Telescope

Jack’s scope is a 50mm folded path refractor spotting scope with two settings; 20 power and 30 power. The eyepiece is build in, it has an adjustable focus based on +/- diopters just like an adjustable focus binocular eyepiece. There are two sets of lenses on the optical axis to correct any aberrations caused by the folded path design. It produces very good images. It was made in Russia but imported to the US by BAS trading group.

Partial Solar Eclipse

And here is a view of the sun from the parking lot.




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