Observation by Bill W: Laboratory Swan Bands

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Bill Ward


Bill W


2010 May 12 - 20:23


2019 Sep 14 - 17:31



  • Home made spectroscope
  • Butane torch
  • Canon350D
Target name

Swan Bands


Laboratory Swan Bands

About this image

A bit of laboratory astrophysics. Much is said of the Swan Bands in cometary spectra. These are emissions from C2. Not having a ready made comet to experiment with. it occured to me I might have a suitable analogue!

Pointing my home made Littrow spectroscope at the flame of a propane torch used for plumbing I recorded this spectra of  the C2 emissions in the flame. Pretty much the same as a comet, just a bit hotter.. ;-)

The only real difference is the yellow line (sodium) coming from somewhere as it's not a C emission.

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