Correlating Sunspots to Active Regions

Correlating Sunspots to Active Regions Photo Credit: NASA


The sun has fascinated us for centuries and we have been trying to observe and understand it for just as long. Modern technology allows us to observe the sun in new ways, allowing us to increase how knowledge of how the sun works. Use the resources on the student esheet to help you make your own table for recording areas of sunspots and active regions.


Collect information for your assigned subset of images using the applet on the Mapping Sunspots and Active Areas site. Be sure to include information on all 26 dates for the month of January.

For each pair of images, calculate the ratio of X-ray area to sunspot area and record the results in the appropriate column in your table.

Date Area of sunspots (pixels) Area of active regions (pixels) Ratio of X-ray area/sunspot area



The ratio of X-ray area/sunspot area measures the correlation between the two. Do the ratios indicate a correlation between the two?


How can we graph the data to determine whether or not there is a correlation between sunspot area and active region area?



Did you find this resource helpful?