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The Kodaikanal Solar Observatory (KSO)



  Apr 06, 2024

The Kodaikanal Solar Observatory (KSO)



KSO is a remarkable institution with a storied history of solar observation and research. Here’s an overview of the observatory and its significance:

Kodaikanal Solar Observatory: A Century of Solar Gazing

●Establishment: Founded in 1899, KSO is operated by the Indian Institute of Astrophysics and is located in the Palani Hills of Tamil Nadu, India.

●Contributions: The observatory is known for its significant contributions to solar physics, including the discovery of the Evershed Effect in 1909.

● Archives: KSO has one of the world’s most comprehensive solar data archives, with daily images of the sun dating back over a century.

●Digitization Project: An ongoing project aims to digitize and preserve the observatory’s vast collection of solar observations, ensuring their availability for future research.

●Collaborations: KSO collaborates with other observatories globally, sharing valuable solar and astronomical data for research purposes.

●Aditya-L1 Spacecraft: The Indian Space Research Organisation’s Aditya-L1 mission complements KSO’s data by observing the sun from a vantage point 1.5 million kilometers from Earth.

FAQs About Kodaikanal Solar Observatory

●What is the purpose of KSO?

KSO is dedicated to the study of solar phenomena and contributes to our understanding of solar variability and its impact on Earth’s climate.

●What discoveries have been made at KSO?

One of the key discoveries is the Evershed Effect, which pertains to radial gas flows across sunspots.


●What is the digitization project at KSO?

The project involves scanning over 200,000 glass plate images dating back to 1904, preserving them for future research.

●How does KSO contribute to global solar research?

By sharing its extensive solar data with other observatories, KSO plays a crucial role in the global study of solar activity.

●What is the significance of the Aditya-L1 spacecraft?

Aditya-L1 is designed to study the solar atmosphere and will provide year-round solar observations, enhancing the data collected by KSO.


The Kodaikanal Solar Observatory continues to be a beacon of solar research, inspiring new generations of astronomers and contributing to our understanding of the sun’s influence on our planet



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