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Robert Walsh - solar guides


Robert Walsh


Image of Robert WalshImage of the University of Lancashire logo



Where do you work?
I work at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) in Preston in the North West of England. I teach both mathematics and astrophysics to our students.






Image of St. Andrews in Scotland

Where did you study ?
I was born in Lisburn, Northern Ireland and studied at St Andrews University in Scotland. St. Andrews is a small town on the East Coast of Scotland, about 50 miles north of Edinburgh. It has loads of history and the University is the oldest in Scotland. St. Andrews is probably best known as 'The Home of Golf' - often you can see famous people (like the Duke of York or even Tiger Woods) out on the well known 'Old Course'.

Image of Robert working by his computer


What interests you about the Sun?
Well, I examine the outer parts of the Sun or the corona. In particular, I use complex mathematical models to understand how the magnetic field of the Sun shapes and forms the incredible features we see (as in the image to the right). Some of the bright magnetic arches I investigate are many times larger than the Earth.


Image of Robert and friends during the 1999 total eclipseAny magic moments?
Lots, but in solar physics, the tops has to be seeing the 1999 eclipse. It was magic. Here is a photo of the eclipse when the Sun is partially covered and of me with some friends just afterwards.





Image of the total eclipse, 1999





Image of Robert mountain climbing


What about your spare time?
I don't have too much spare time now because I've got a young son, Matthew and daughter, Emma. I love watching football (at Preston North End) and rugby and I am hooked up continually to my iPod! Also I love to cook (Mexican being my speciality) and I belong to a local Fellowship Church in Preston.




Image of the White House in Washington DC, USAIs there any city in the world that you really like?
I love visiting Washington DC, the capital of America. I go there a lot to visit the Goddard Space Flight Center, which is the mission control for the SOHO satellite. The museums are excellent and there are so many historic landmarks and famous buildings, like the White House for example.


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