Solar Science

A blog of solar physics

Predictions of Solar Cycle 24: No Consensus

with 4 comments

I found this page detailing the varying predictions on Solar Cycle 24, ranging from high down to low in terms of sunspots and maximum magnetic field.

Whatever else it shows, it shows that quite a few scientists are going to be proven wrong by Solar Cycle 24.

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Written by John A

November 3, 2007 at 7:44 pm

Posted in Solar Cycle 24

4 Responses

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  1. Are you mostly intrigued by the possibility of an interesting and unusual event, or are you mostly interested in the “quite a few scientists are going to be proven wrong” part?

    While I’m no solar science expert, my strong impression is that solar forecasting is considered to be a very young and undeveloped science, and nearly all practitioners don’t believe they understand the fundamental forces at work. It’s hard to prove someone wrong when their position is “we don’t know enough to be sure.”

    Maybe I’m interpreting your post wrongly but it looks like you’re beating up on unnamed scientists unfairly.

    J. S.

    November 12, 2007 at 10:01 am

  2. I just did a web search to try to find out what the latest predictions are and they are all over the place, from lowest in 100 years to a real big one. The scientists daring to predict are the bravest ones and the ones most likely to be proven right or wrong. But it’s all part of the scientific trial and error method, as different predictive models are tested. Me, I’m interested in the severity of riots, rebellions and wars likely to result once those solar flares start sending out radiation that ups negative ionization in the atmosphere. You can put away your negative ionization machines during the height of a cycle because there’s more than enough in the atmosphere to “pump you up.”

    Carol Moore

    November 14, 2007 at 2:33 pm

  3. Whilst I respect that scientists’ predictions being proven wrong does not invalidate that person as a scientist – nevertheless there are a lot of crackpot theories in solar science that need to be debunked.
    And the best way is to have a prediction falsified by events.
    From my observation of climate models, it appears that no even being totally wrong predicting climate into the near future appears to have any effect on the veracity of the model used – it just needs “tweaking” rather than throwing away.

    John A

    November 17, 2007 at 9:40 am

  4. OK, fair enough.

    NASA forecasters seem to have dozens of half-baked forecasting methods, but I think this is OK since almost nobody believes we understand enough to make good forecasts.

    J. S.

    November 18, 2007 at 11:32 pm


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