A Look at Sunspots

A Look at Sunspots Photo Credit: NASA


The sun is the source of all life on earth, providing light and warmth to the organisms that inhabit our planet. As a result, the sun has fascinated humans throughout history. This fascination has led scientists to study the sun, and they often have to use technology to aid them in doing so. Use the resources on the A Look at Sunspots student esheet to help you answer the questions on this sheet.

Soft X-Ray Telescope: Most Recent Image

Describe the features of the sun as seen in this image.


What are sunspots?


How do you think they are produced?


Why do you think scientists study sunspots?


How do you think scientists study sunspots?


What are some barriers to sudying sunspots using technology?



Sunspots: History

Are sunspots visible to the naked eye?


What problems did astronomers face by viewing the sun with the naked eye?


How do you think the telescope changed the study of astronomy and, specifically, sunspots forever?


What is visible light?


If white light were exposed to a prism, what colors would emerge?



Microworlds: Exploring the Structure of Materials

What kind of electromagnetic radiation has the shortest wavelength? The longest?


What kind of electromagnetic radiation could be used to "see" molecules? A cold virus?


Some insects, like bees, can see light of shorter wavelengths than humans can see. What kind of radiation do you think a bee sees?

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