Sunspotter in Traditional Character Chinese!

This post is on behalf of Megan Schwamb, who is currently on the science teams of Planet Four and Planet Hunters. Megan is a postdoctoral fellow at Academia Sinica’s Institute of Astronomy & Astrophysics (ASIAA).

We’re pleased to announce that Sunspotter has been translated to traditional character Chinese. Many thanks to the Zooniverse’s Chris Snyder for getting all the technical things set up for the translation to go live and Mei-Yin Chou at Academia Sinica’s Institute of Astronomy & Astrophysics (ASIAA) in Taiwan for the translating. What follows is an announcement describing Sunspotter in traditional character Chinese and then in English:

太 陽偵查員的目標是決定太陽黑子群的複雜度。大部分的太陽物理學家相信看起來越複雜的太陽黑子群會比看起來簡單的產生更多(且更大)的太陽閃 焰。但是到目前 為止,科學家還找不到一個評量太陽黑子群複雜度的好方法。這對電腦來說也不是個簡單的任務。然而人類卻可以輕易指出兩張影像中哪個比較複雜。

1. 太陽黑子的複雜度是與生俱來的還是經由時間演化造成的?
2. 比較複雜的太陽黑子群會造成比較多的爆發嗎?

在太陽偵查員的第一階段,志工們已經評量超過一萬張太陽黑子群影像的複雜度。這是科學家第一次使用這種評量方式。太陽黑子群的複雜度現在 可以跟其他性質比較,例如大小或總磁通量。而且,這也讓我們發現越複雜的太陽黑子群越可能造成大爆發!

過 去幾個月來,太陽偵查員的第二階段已經啟動,包含了二十萬張太陽黑子群影像。到目前為止,志工們已經做了一百萬個評量!這個階段最終將能 提供我們一個巨大 的資料庫來做分析。除了比較太陽黑子群特性和複雜度及爆發之間的關係,我們也將能得知太陽黑子群出現、越過太陽盤面、最後緩慢消失,這期 間其複雜度的演化 過程。


The goal of Sunspotter is to determine the complexity of sunspot groups. Most solar physicists believe that more complicated looking sunspot groups produce more (and larger) solar flares than simple looking ones. But so far, scientists have not found a good way to quantify sunspot group complexity. This is not a task easily accomplished by a computer. Humans, on the other hand, can easily point to the more complex in a pair of images.

Knowledge of sunspot group complexity will help to definitively answer some of solar physics’ biggest unanswered questions including: 1. Are sunspots born complex or do they evolve to become complex? 2. Do sunspot groups that are more complex produce more eruptions?

In the first round of Sunspotter, volunteers managed to rank over 10,000 images of sunspot groups in terms of complexity. This is the first time that scientists have achieved such a ranking. Sunspot group complexity can now be compared with other properties, such as size and total magnetic flux. Also, this has allowed us to show that more complex sunspot groups are more likely to release large eruptions!

For the past few months, the second round of Sunspotter has been live, and includes 200,000 images of sunspot groups. So far, volunteers have already submitted 1,000,000 rankings! At the end of this round we will have a massive database to analyse. In addition to comparing other sunspot group properties to complexity and eruptions, we will also be able to determine the evolution of complexity with in sunspot groups as they emerge, cross the solar disk, and slowly decay.


About Dr. Paul A. Higgins

I am a postdoctoral research fellow in the Astrophysics Research Group at Trinity College Dublin in Ireland. Currently I am a visiting researcher at LMSAL in Palo Alto, CA. I am investigating the causes of solar eruptions. To do this I use image processing and data mining techniques to study the evolution of sunspot groups as they are born, cross the solar disk, producing flares and coronal mass ejections, and then quietly decay and fade away.

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