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Duncan Mackay - solar guides


Hi, my name's Duncan Mackay:


Image of Duncan MackayWhere do you work?

I was born in Aberdeen, Scotland, and after leaving school I went to St. Andrews University to study physics and maths. I am still working at St. Andrews. I study solar prominences. These are cool, dense regions of gas that are found high up in the Sun's hot corona. Solar prominences may last for many months. It is still a mystery how and why they form and why they last so long. These are some of the questions that I am trying to answer.


Image of a set of golf balls and the St. Andrews golf courseWhat do you do in your spare time?

My favourite spare-time activity is tennis. I play for the local tennis team, but I also enjoy cycling, running, playing football and golf. Well you can't live in St. Andrews and not play golf. When I am too exhausted to play any sport I enjoy going out to the cinema or reading.



Image of Ottawa, USADo you travel a lot?

Like many people who work in solar physics, I get to travel around a great deal. When you live in Scotland you have to travel to see the Sun! In Europe, I have travelled to Paris, the French Alps, Catania and Florence. I have also been to the USA and visited Boulder and Los Angeles. By far my favourite place to visit is Ottawa. Ottawa is one of the most beautiful cities I have ever seen and the people are extremely friendly.

Image of a solar prominence

Image of a model of the magnetic fields on the Sun


Here is a model of the magnetic fields on the Sun.


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