Discover the Sun!

  Solar Cycle Science Discover the Sun!

Discover the People!

This website was developed and is maintained by two solar physicsts: Dr. Lisa Upton and Dr. David Hathaway. We both study Active Regions and flows on the Sun and are interested in how these components work together to produce the Solar Activity Cycle. Together, we have developed a state of the art surface flux transport model known as the Advective Flux Transport, or AFT, model. We use the model to study the Sun and to make predictions about the Sun.

We have created this website in order to share our knoweldge and love of the Sun and our data with both the general public and our fellow scientists alike. We hope you enjoy your visit here!!!

This page includes a bio for both us as well as links to many of our papers.

Discover David Hathaway!

Dr. Hathaway received a B.S. in Astronomy in 1973 from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, an M.S. in Physics in 1975 and a Ph.D. in Astrophysics in 1979 - both from the University of Colorado in Boulder. He was a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Advanced Study Program at the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder from 1979 to 1981 and then moved to Sunspot, New Mexico where he was an Assistant Astronomer at the National Solar Observatory. In 1984 he moved to Huntsville, Alabama where he was an Astrophysicist at NASA's Marshall Space Flight Center and served as the head of the Solar Physics Branch from 1996 to 2010. In July of 2014 he relocated to NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, California. He retired from NASA on December 31, 2016 but still continues to work on his areas of interest.

His research interests include observing, modeling, and predicting the sunspot cycle, and understanding the magnetohydrodynamics of the Sun’s interior and how it produces the Sun’s atmospheric features. He has published over 200 papers and has three US patents.

Dr. Hathaway was a 40-year member of the Solar Physics Division of the American Astronomical Society. He served as the Division’s Vice-Chairperson, Secretary, Committee Member, Media Liaison, and Chaired its Hale and Harvey Prize Committee. He was also a member of the International Astronomical Union, the American Geophysical Union, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the Asia Oceania Geoscience Society. He has received dozens of awards from NASA, including the NASA Inventor of the Year Award in 2002 for Video Image Stabilization And Registration (VISAR) and the NASA Exceptional Scientific Achievement Medal in 2014 for his discoveries of the Sun’s shallow meridional return flow and giant convection cells. He also received the Space Foundation’s Space Technology Hall of Fame Medal in 2001 for VISAR.

Dr. Hathaway can be reached via email at dave dot hathaway at comcast dot net.

Discover Lisa Upton!

Dr. Upton began her education in Solar Physics working with Dr. Joan Schmelz at the University of Memphis in 2006. There, she performed thermal and density analysis of coronal loops using data from CDS, TRACE, EIS and XRT. In 2008, Lisa received a B.S. in Electrical Engineering and Physics and in 2010 she received her M.S. degrees in Physics from UM. While there, she became interested in another aspect of solar physics: the solar activity cycle.

During the summer of 2009, Dr. Upton had an internship at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, where she began working with Dr. David Hathaway using feature tracking to measure the axisymmetric flows on the surface of the Sun. This fruitful collaboration resulted in a paper in Science and after completing her Masters, Dr. Upton relocated to Huntsville to continue her work with Hathaway. In 2012, Dr. Upton received her 2nd Masters in Physics from the University of Alabama in Huntsville and was hired on as a Research Associate.

In 2013, Dr. Upton transferred to Vanderbilt University while continuing her work with Dr. Hathaway in Huntsville. In May of 2014, she received her Ph.D. in Physics from Vanderbilt University. For her PhD dissertation (Characterizing and Modeling Magnetic Flux Transport in the Sun’s Photosphere and Determining Its Impact on the Sunspot Cycle), Dr. Upton and Dr. Hathaway worked together to develope a cutting edge Surface Flux Transport model, the Advective Flux Transport ( AFT). Dr. Upton used the AFT model to investigate the importance of high latitude meridional flow variations in modulating the solar cycle as well as the ability of AFT to produce solar cycle predictions.

September of 2014, Dr. Upton relocated to Colorado. There she began working for Space Systems Research Corporation and held a role as a Visiting Scientist at HAO. In the spring of 2017, Dr. Upton began a NSF postdoctoral fellowship* at HAO, working as a collaborator with the dynamo group. Dr. Upton's current research goals are aimed at understanding the solar dynamo, solar cycle variability, and the impact on the Sun-Earth environment. In particular her interests lie in observing and modeling magnetic flux transport. In the future, Lisa hopes advance Sun-Earth system research by bridging the solar interior and the solar atmosphere with AFT. She also hope to use AFT as a tool to improve Space Weather and Space Climate predictions.

Dr. Upton can be reached via email at lisa at solarcyclescience dot com.

* Some material on this website is based upon work supported by the National Science Foundation under Grant Number (1624438). Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.

Discover our Papers!

Predicting the amplitude and hemispheric asymmetry of solar cycle 25 with surface flux transport
Hathaway, David H.; Upton, Lisa A.
11/2016 ADS Link

Magnetic Flux Transport and the Long-term Evolution of Solar Active Regions
Ugarte-Urra, Ignacio; Upton, Lisa; Warren, Harry P.; Hathaway, David H
12/2015 ADS Link

The Sun's Photospheric Convection Spectrum
Hathaway, David H.; Teil, Thibaud; Norton, Aimee A.; Kitiashvili, Irina
10/2015 ADS Link

The Solar Cycle
Hathaway, David H.
09/2015 ADS Link

Magnetic Flux Transport at the Solar Surface
Jiang, J.; Hathaway, D. H.; Cameron, R. H.; Solanki, S. K.; Gizon, L.; Upton, L.
12/2014 ADS Link

Effects of Meridional Flow Variations on Solar Cycles 23 and 24
Upton, Lisa; Hathaway, David H.
09/2014 ADS Link

The solar meridional circulation and sunspot cycle variability
Hathaway, D. H.; Upton, L.
05/2014 ADS Link

Predicting the Sun's Polar Magnetic Fields with a Surface Flux Transport Model
Upton, Lisa; Hathaway, David H
01/2014 ADS Link

Giant Convection Cells Found on the Sun
Hathaway, David H.; Upton, Lisa; Colegrove, Owen
12/2013 ADS Link

A Curious History of Sunspot Penumbrae
Hathaway, D. H.
09/2013 ADS Link

Hemispheric Asymmetries of Solar Photospheric Magnetism: Radiative, Particulate, and Heliospheric Impacts
McIntosh, Scott W.; Leamon, Robert J.; Gurman, Joseph B.; Olive, Jean-Philippe; Cirtain, Jonathan W.; Hathaway, David H.; Burkepile, Joan; Miesch, Mark; Markel, Robert S.; Sitongia, Leonard
03/2013 ADS Link

Measurements of the Sun's High-latitude Meridional Circulation
Rightmire-Upton, Lisa; Hathaway, David H.; Kosak, Katie
12/2012 ADS Link

Supergranules as Probes of the Sun's Meridional Circulation
Hathaway, David H.
11/2012 ADS Link

Behavior of Solar Cycles 23 and 24 Revealed by Microwave Observations
Gopalswamy, N.; Yashiro, S.; Mäkelä, P.; Michalek, G.; Shibasaki, K.; Hathaway, D. H.
05/2012 ADS Link

Supergranules as Probes of Solar Convection Zone Dynamics
Hathaway, David H.
04/2012 ADS Link

A Standard Law for the Equatorward Drift of the Sunspot Zones
Hathaway, D. H.
10/2011 ADS Link

Variations in the Axisymmetric Transport of Magnetic Elements on the Sun: 1996-2010
Hathaway, David H.; Rightmire, Lisa
03/2011 ADS Link

The Advection of Supergranules by the Sun's Axisymmetric Flows
Hathaway, David H.; Williams, Peter E.; Dela Rosa, Kevin; Cuntz, Manfred
12/2010 ADS Link

Variations in the Sun’s Meridional Flow over a Solar Cycle
Hathaway, David H.; Rightmire, Lisa
03/2010 ADS Link

The Solar Cycle
Hathaway, David H.
03/2010 ADS Link