View Full Version : I want to take a picture of the sun

2004-Feb-18, 12:55 AM
I wanna take a picture of the sun with my telescope and my digital camera but I don't have a solar filter... so would it be safe to manually aim the scope(by guessing) where the sun is and then just positioning my camera on the eyepeice and take the picture?

2004-Feb-18, 01:00 AM
I'm thinking you'll likely oversaturate the digital camera regardless of exposure time and possibly permanently damage the camera. Which would not be good.
You can, if you want, project the image of the sun from your telescope onto a white piece of paper and take a picture of that...

Nowhere Man
2004-Feb-18, 01:41 AM
Compare the price of a solar filter to the price of a new digital camera. Then consider that, using the technique you outlined, without a filter you will likely be out a camera and still not have a picture.

Ever burned ants with a magnifying glass? Now, how big is your scope compared to that glass? Imagine that much more light being concentrated on your poor camera. Or on your eye.

If you must have a sun picture, use the projection technique. If you don't have a filter, turn the scope away from the sun frequently.


2004-Feb-18, 03:02 AM
Also, if you have a large apature scope, that much magnified sunlight could damage the optics, not to mention your camera. A mylor filter covering the objective of your scope is the best bet.

2004-Feb-18, 03:36 AM
I've taken a couple of decent pictures by covering my scope with paper and cutting a button-sized hole (1cm or so) in the center.

To aim a scope at the sun, if it didn't come with a screen, hold a piece of paper behind it, line up the shadow, and when the sun gets into the field of view it will project onto the paper.

Charlie in Dayton
2004-Feb-18, 08:17 AM
Making yourself a homemade solar filter (http://www.astro-physics.com/index.htm?products/accessories/solar_acc/astrosolar) isn't that expensive.

I contacted these fine folk -- the stuff for naked eyeballing can be used for photography just fine by adjusting the exposure time.[/url]