Mauna Loa Solar Observatory Gets A New Dome

Views of the Mauna Loa Solar Observatory. Image Credit: HAO

Views of the Mauna Loa Solar Observatory. Image Credit: HAO

January 7, 2016 – After 50 years of operation, the Mauna Loa Solar Observatory (MLSO) received a major facelift this week. A new dome has been installed at the site. The old dome was removed Tuesday morning, January 5th, and the new dome was installed before the end of the same day. After removal of the old dome, the main dome building had to be shortened by seven inches to accommodate the new dome.

MLSO has been operating since the mid-1960s, providing a nearly-continuous record of solar data. MLSO monitors and records data on the solar atmosphere, including studies of coronal mass ejections (CMEs). MLSO data includes white light corona, emission corona, H-alpha (disk and limb), He-I, and photometric.

The Mauna Loa Solar Observatory occupies part of the NOAA Mauna Loa research site located at an elevation of 3440 meters on the island of Hawaii. It is operated by the High Altitude Observatory, a division of the National Center for Atmospheric Research, which is located in Boulder, Colorado.

Time-lapse of MLSO dome replacement. Credit: HAO

Time-lapse of MLSO dome replacement. Credit: HAO