Harvard University

Astronomy Lab and Clay Telescope


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Luminosity and Temperature of the Sun

How much energy does the Sun put out every second? You should be able to determine this surprisingly accurately - for example, well enough to use in combination with your measure of the solar radius to derive the surface temperature of the Sun (and compare with the true value). We will use a paraffin photometer, which is simply 2 paraffin blocks optically separated by aluminum foil and held together with a rubber band, to measure the apparent brightness of the Sun.

What you'll need: