Measurement of Kodaikanal White-Light Images – II. Rotation Comparison and Merging with Mount Wilson Data

Research paper by Robert F. Howard, S.S. Gupta, K.R. Sivaraman

Indexed on: 01 May '99Published on: 01 May '99Published in: Solar Physics


Sunspot umbral positions and areas were measured for 82 years (1906–1987) of daily, full-disk photoheliogram observations at the Kodaikanal station of the Indian Institute of Astrophysics. The measurement technique and reduction procedures used were nearly identical to those used earlier for the reduction of Mount Wilson daily full-disk photoheliograms, covering an overlapping interval of 69 years. In this paper we compare the differential rotation of the Sun from the analysis of the Kodaikanal data with the Mount Wilson results. In addition, we analyze the data set formed by combining the data from the two sites for differential rotation. While doing this, it has become apparent to us that small, subtle optical effects at both sites produce systematic errors that have an influence on rotation (and other) results from these data. These optical effects are analyzed here, and corrections are made to the positional data of the sunspots from both sites. A data set containing the combined positional data of sunspots from both sites, corrected for these optical aberrations, has been constructed. Results for both sunspot groups and individual sunspots are presented. It is pointed out that optical aberrations similar to those found in the Kodaikanal data may also exist in the Greenwich photoheliograph data, because these two sets of solar images were made with similar telescopes.