Please join us as Don Stevens, long-time member and Director of Perkins Observatory, delivers a talk on Starspots – Surface Blemishes Revealing a Deeper Beauty. Coffee and donuts will be provided. We hope to see you there!
For centuries astronomers had only one star that they could resolve its surface and study it in great detail – the Sun. Other stars were simply too far away to be seen as anything more than points of light. There were limits to what we could understand about the nature of the stars as a result. This led to the assumption that the Sun was unique among the stars. As technology improved and innovative techniques to study the light from stars were developed, more could be learned. Indeed, in the last couple of decades, imaging technology and data analysis techniques have improved to the point where astronomers can resolve the surfaces of other stars. This has advanced our understanding of both the sun and other stars. In this talk, the focus will be on one feature of the Sun and sun-like stars – spots. Also discussed, how we can see these spots on the surfaces of other stars and what we can learn from observing them.