Comets: A Chronological History of Observation, Science, by Donald K. Yeomans

By Donald K. Yeomans

Incomplete dossier: pages 141-358, 474-496 are passed over

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Extra info for Comets: A Chronological History of Observation, Science, Myth, and Folklore

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The spectroscope is placed with its slit in the focus of an equatoreal telescope, pointed to the sun, so that the circular image of the sun falls on the slit. At the other end of the spectroscope is the photographic plate. Just in front of this plate there is another slit parallel to the first, in the position where the image of the first slit formed by the K line of calcium falls. Thus is obtained a photograph of the section of the sun, made by the first slit, only in K light. As the image of the sun passes over the first slit the photographic plate is moved at the same rate and in the same direction behind the second slit; and as successive sections of the sun's image in the equatoreal enter the apparatus, so are these sections successively thrown in their proper place on the photographic plate, always in K light.

Thus is obtained a photograph of the section of the sun, made by the first slit, only in K light. As the image of the sun passes over the first slit the photographic plate is moved at the same rate and in the same direction behind the second slit; and as successive sections of the sun's image in the equatoreal enter the apparatus, so are these sections successively thrown in their proper place on the photographic plate, always in K light. By using a high dispersion the faculæ which give off K light can be correctly photographed, not only at the sun's edge, but all over his surface.

Dawes. But it was a difficult subject, owing to the rapidity of the changes in appearance of the so-called rice-grains, about 1" in diameter. The rapid transformations and circulations of these rice-grains, if thoroughly studied, might lead to a much better knowledge of solar physics. This seemed almost hopeless, as it was found impossible to identify any "rice-grain" in the turmoil after a few minutes. But M. Hansky, of Pulkowa (whose recent death is deplored), introduced successfully a scheme of photography, which might almost be called a solar cinematograph.

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