Staring at the sun

Since  Florence Marie was leaving on Tuesday this week, we took her to Kitt Peak, a place we’ve talked about visiting for several years but never have until now.

Kitt Peak 009

The observatory is located on the second most sacred peak of the Tohono O’odham Nation. Patience and tenacity on the part of the National Science Foundation, which had decided on the location as one of the three best sites around the nation, won a perpetual lease agreement with the Nation. Time on the telescopes is sought after by students and scientists from all over and must be reserved long in advance, sometimes even years. A prospect must submit a paper outlining their desired project and it must be determined to be worthy of time. Kitt Peak is famous for hosting the first telescope used to search for near-Earth asteroids.

While we were there, we were able to view sunspots and some sort of spikes out from the edge of the sun through a solar telescope. These “spikes” are not the same as flares, we learned, but I forget exactly what they called them. Flares leave the surface and don’t come back. We stared at the sun (albeit through a protected telescope) and did not go blind!

When we stopped for a picnic lunch on the way back down the mountain, we were joined by a couple of beautiful beggars looking for a handout.  Anyone have a name for them?

Kitt Peak 026

Kitt Peak 030

Advertisements
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Staring at the sun

  1. Joe Renfro says:

    I beleive those are Mexican Jays. Squawky and obnoxious like the Stellar Jays, or Robbers Jays, you may see in the area as well. You nailed them with the beggar title.

  2. Joe Renfro says:

    Oh my goodeness. I BELIEVE those are Mexican Jays.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s