Solar Science

A blog of solar physics

Ken Tapping: The Current Solar Minimum

with 43 comments

I received this via e-mail from K7RA. The original document comes from Dr Kenneth Tapping who was quoted not long ago regarding the solar cycle being “the quietest [he’d] ever seen in 25 years”. This was taken to mean that the current solar minimum was historically unusual, and here Dr Tapping explains that this is not so.

I reproduce here the entire document (other than stylistic changes from PDF to the blog, not a word or a graph has been altered from the original):

The Current Solar Minimum

Ken Tapping, 2008-04-17

This note summarizes my current feeling about the state of solar activity and the solar activity cycle. Any conclusions currently in circulation that have been drawn by extrapolating what you see in this note should not be regarded as reflecting my views. My conclusions are in this note. The information used here is freely available and readers are strongly encouraged to get the data, look at it and draw their own conclusions.

The current solar activity is not that unusual. At this point it is completely unjustified to see current solar behaviour as an indication of any departure from its what the Sun has been doing for at least the last 300 years.

Figure 1 shows a plot of solar activity as measured by the solar radio flux monitors operated by the National Research Council of Canada.

tapping-figure11

Figure 1: Monthly averaged 10.7 cm solar radio flux solar activity index since 1947 (monthly means).

The arrow under the 1964-1977 cycle indicates the length of that cycle, which was a little longer than the others. That same arrow has been copied and put under the last cycle. The length is unchanged. It can be seen that the current solar activity cycle (now ending) has not yet exceeded the length of the 1964-77 cycle. It is also clear that the longish cycle in 1964-77 was followed by further activity cycles – normal solar behaviour. To exceed the duration of the 1964-1977 cycle, the new cycle would have to delay its start at least well into 2009.

Figure 2 shows the 1964-77 and the 1997-? cycles overlaid on the same plot. Once again we can see the last cycle has yet to last longer than the 1964-77 cycle.

tapping-figure-21

Figure 2: The 1964-77 cycles compared. The current cycle (black trace) has yet to last longer than the 1964-77 cycle (red trace).

The 10.7 cm solar flux covers only about six solar activity cycles. Sunspot number data covers at least 300 years. The histogram Figure 3 shows how the durations of the cycles as seen in the sunspot data have varied since 1700. A 13-year activity cycle is not that unusual.

tapping-figure-3

Figure 3: Distribution of solar cycle durations over the last 300 years. The 1964-1977 cycle, having a
duration of 13 years is unusual, but not that unusual.

CONCLUSION: AT THE MOMENT IT IS UNJUSTIFIED TO ASSUME THE SUN IS UNDERGOING A SIGNIFICANT CHANGE IN BEHAVIOUR. ON THE BASIS OF SUNSPOT NUMBER DATA, WE CANNOT ASSUME ANYTHING ODD IS HAPPENING UNLESS THE NEXT CYCLE DELAYS ITS START INTO 2009 OR 2010.

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43 Responses

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  1. Thanks. I feel better. It’s interesting that some AGW advocates use aerosol masking to explain the relatively cool 60’s and 70’s, when cycle 20 is so handy.

    Papertiger

    April 22, 2008 at 3:45 am

  2. The interesting thing about the 1964-77 cycle is that it occurred during the 1945-77 global cooling cycle and the 1977-1998 global warming cycle began abruptly at the beginning of cycle 21.

    Don

    April 22, 2008 at 6:40 am

  3. Don. I think the sun activity reached an about 1000 years record in the end of the 20th century, so the warming since the 70th shouldn’t be that strange.

    Of course climate isn’t controled by any single factor, but the aproximately 11 years sun cycle is proved to be important (a co-variance with relative changes of some 10th of a degree C), and thus the sun has to be a quite important factor. Not so surpricing… 😉

    I agree that we mustn’t have a solar minimum the coming decades. But the probability of a not so strong solar cycle 24 will increase if it’s start is very much delayed – but we really don’t know anything for sure. I think Archibald has invested too much and speculates in a propagandistic way about a new minimum. It may come, but I think there is a less than 50/50 “chance” that we will have global cooling driven from weak SS cycles the coming decades. I’m an AGW skeptic, and sceptical towards any bad science.

    (Parenthetical: I think the work with Svensmark’s hypothesis/theory is interresting to follow, where I think Sloan makes some methodological mistakes debunking him. There are many facts giving Svensmark support, not at least compared with the lack of facts giving AGW support – AGW mainly supported by future models.

    I also wonder if the Landscheidt cycle has some relevance – although he indeed was a stupid astrolog. A webpage:
    http://landscheidt.auditblogs.com/archives/17

    Landscheidt is not at all mainsteam science, but Svensmark at the Danish Space Center is good, but furiously criticized it seems.)

    Magnus A

    April 22, 2008 at 7:36 am

  4. The last thing the Earth needs is another ice age of any sort. CAGW is associated with much dubious science, but de-bunking CAGW with dubious science of one’s own is not justified.

    The main problem is whether the political climate of hysteria will allow time to sort out all the forcings?

    BTW, what about the readings of the “solar conveyor” that have been predicting particularly low and slow solar activity in a decade or so? Where is a good source for updates of that information?

    Al Fin

    April 22, 2008 at 7:52 am

  5. One note of caution when comparing current cycles with those of the past: how long have we had the sensitive instruments which allow us to pick up these “Tiny Tim” sunspots and verify their polarity? How long have we been able to detect activity on the far side?

    Already solar scientists are growing impatient with the delay (and their own poor prognostications) and are chomping at the bit to declare cycle 24 in full swing. Such is the natural human tendency to want to “get on with things”, but combining such human tendencies with less sensitive and less accurate instruments in the past, in what likely way would past cycle length measurments have been distorted?

    Al Fin

    April 22, 2008 at 8:40 am

  6. Just eyeballing it, but that arrow looks to me to be longer than the 64-77 cycle.

    And to claim that the current cycle is ending is not to say that the end is now. We don’t know when cycle 24 will end. It could end next month, or it could drag on for another 6 to 12 months. Nobody knows.

    MarkW

    April 22, 2008 at 12:31 pm

  7. MarkW, I think you’re right. The end point looks like it’s 6-9 months past the lowest point of the cycle, where is is already clearly on the upswing. If that is correct, then cycle 23 is most likely already the same length as cycle 20 with no end in sight.

    Mike K

    April 22, 2008 at 4:20 pm

  8. According to the last plot, a cycle exceeding thirteen years is a 1-in-10 occurrence. It might be “not _that_ unusual”, but it is not that usual either.

    Alan S. Blue

    April 22, 2008 at 6:47 pm

  9. But we don’t need to know that the sun is doing “something odd” to know that the real driver of global temperature is solar-magnetic activity, not CO2, and that the real and impending danger is global cooling from the inevitable fall off from “grand maximum” levels of solar activity between 1940 and 2000.

    We need MORE greenhouse gases, not less.

    Alec Rawls

    April 22, 2008 at 7:00 pm

  10. Toward the end of Solar Cycle 20 this story appeared in Newsweek.

    The Cooling World
    Newsweek, April 28, 1975
    http://www.denisdutton.com/cooling_world.htm

    It must have been a coincidence.

    Mike

    Michael Ronayne

    April 22, 2008 at 8:51 pm

  11. Actually, solar cycles overlap, so, the length given for 20 is OK.

    I think they measure based on the appearance of the particular polarity spots. Cycles actually overlap based on spots appearing of both polarities during the same time period.

    In other words, some have declared 24 started based on the spot in January!! We are still getting spots for 23 so it isn’t over yet. This is normal.

    What isn’t very normal is the low level of spots from BOTH cycles at this point. Not exceptional, but definitely low as the comparison with 20 shows. Whether it turns out that 24 starts very slow, or 23 ends later very low…

    Of course, the question of whether the older cycles were measured with the same sensitivity is a valid question just as with hurricane number and size!!

    KuhnKat

    April 23, 2008 at 12:34 am

  12. Warm and cold periods do correlate well with solar cycles. Solar cycle 23 is looking to be longer than normal. Should cycle 23 drag out a little longer, then we can say that we’re likely entering a cool period. Indeed recent ocean and surface temperatures suggest this.
    However we simply just don’t have enough data to suggest we’re entering a Dalton or Maunder Minimum. We’ll just have to be more patient on that. We’ll know in about 4 to 6 years.
    If Cycle 24 ends up being like cycle 23, then all we’ll have is just more “climate as usual” – a cooler period perhaps, and not much more.
    But if cycle 23 drags on longer, and cycle 24 ends up being weak and protracted, then get your fur coats out!
    I’m not a climate scientist, and thus this must be taken only as pure speculation (note the number of “ifs” I used).

    Pierre Gosselin

    April 23, 2008 at 10:04 am

  13. What I find particulary fascinating is that the total sea ice anomaly has gone from -3 million sq.km just a few months ago to +1 million sq. km today. That’s an anomaly change of 4 million sq. km in such a short time. Such a rapid change has never occurred in the instrumental past. This is weird.

    Pierre Gosselin

    April 23, 2008 at 10:19 am

  14. Pierre: I think we’ll know if something extraordinary happens within a year.

    I’m not a solar scinetist either, but if the SC24 not start this year that’s something odd according to Ken Tipping in this article’s “unless”-part of the conclusion…

    The SC24 is already delayed, and the predictions from NASA and NOAA for a normal or a slightly weaker SC24 (than SC23) assumes SC24 strengthen later this year. Otherwise I guess there is some real reason to worry!

    Magnus A

    April 23, 2008 at 11:44 am

  15. What I find particularly fascinating is that the total sea ice anomaly has gone from -3 million sq km just a few months ago to +1 million sq km today. That’s an anomaly change of 4 million sq. km in such a short time. Such a rapid change has never occurred in the instrumental past. This is weird.

    Pierre Gosselin

    April 23, 2008 at 11:57 am

  16. Maybe solar scientists are holding back from making bold pronouncements. I think that’d be understandable in the current political environment, for both positive and negative reasons.

    For predictive metrics, isn’t it less a question of the duration of transit from SC#23 to SC#24 than the cumulative number of spotless days (since the first spotless day) and the speed of sunspot movement?

    Jan Janssens maintains a “spotless days” page. It’s interesting b/c of the trend analysis halfway down the page. I’ve re-posted his chart for convenience:

    He hasn’t updated it since January, but AFAIK the trend has continued unabated.
    http://users.telenet.be/j.janssens/Spotless/Spotless.html

    More profound is the evidence on SC#25 (the cycle following the next one, #24), showing steeply declining sun spot *motion* across the sun’s surface. This is a metric of a major slowdown of the convective layer’s internal conveyor belt. http://www.physorg.com/news66581392.html

    By the same metrics SC#24 will be normal or quite strong once it ramps up, but SC#25 may prove the onset of a drop in SC amplitude just as this transit is demonstrating lowered frequency.

    My WAG-guess is that these will become the classic portents of grand minima — slower sunspot movement, an increase in cumulative spotless days in conjunction with a slower Schwabe transit.

    So we should expect SC#24 to be a normal (but longer) Schwabe cycle but another slow minimum transit like this one would validate the theory/observation trend, as would SC#25’s projected weak solar max.

    My feeling is that much like the inception of the Little Ice Age, starting with the Sporer minimum, we should look first to less bleak scenarios. I don’t the world needs more Pied Pipers to lead us on more media stampedes & I’m concerned about science getting further skewed as well.

    — leebert

    Lee Rodgers

    April 23, 2008 at 3:40 pm

  17. I agree with A. Blue, Tapping’s article is noteworthy for the size of the cloud of prognosticators against whom it militates. Virtually no one.

    Gary Gulrud

    April 23, 2008 at 7:51 pm

  18. I’m intrigued with the histogram of solar cycle lengths. Timo Niroma has an interesting alternative designed to emphasize the relationship he sees with Jupiter. From http://personal.inet.fi/tiede/tilmari/sunspots.html#twotypes

    x = the 7 cycles 1-7 or 1755-1833
    o = the 5 cycles 8-12 or 1833-1889
    v = the 10 cycles 13-22 or 1889-1996

    length no and kind of cycles
    8.4- 9.1 x
    9.2- 9.9 xov
    10.0-10.7 xovvvvvv
    10.8-11.5 xo
    11.6-12.3 xovvv
    12.4-13.1 xo
    13.2-13.9 x

    (I hope that formats okay.)

    He may well be reaching too far looking for correlations, but is site is interesting and offers some predictions, e.g. minimum in Summer 2009 and a weak maximum in 2014.

    Ric Werme

    April 24, 2008 at 2:08 am

  19. according to the website below (look up cycle 20) Cycle 20 ran from October 1964 to June 1976. 11.67 years long from min to min, not 13. Cycle 23 started in May 1996. I assume this website judges the min as when the new polarity sunspots outnumber the old. As of May 2008 then, cycle 23 is 12 years old and 4 months longer than cycle 20.

    http://www.dxlc.com/english/index.html

    Kmack

    April 24, 2008 at 2:42 am

  20. Longer is worse right?

    You’re putting a wet blanket on my good feelings, Kmack.

    Papertiger

    April 24, 2008 at 3:36 am

  21. NASA modeled the effects of the Maunder Minimum & concluded it did indeed precipitate the Little Ice
    Age.

    The result of multiple cycles of weaker solar maxima & extended minima was a drop in ocean temperatures, stronger Earth-cooling La Ninas, weaker inter-zone convective winds and weaker moist warm ocean weather fronts pushing inland into continental landmasses leading to longer & colder continental winters.

    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/briefs/shindell_06/
    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/research/news/20011206/

    They did not account in any way to the possible role of more cosmic rays increasing total cloud cover (a possible 25% differential effect in shading & albedo over the past century).

    Tim Patterson & Don Easterbrook have both found strong solar cycle correlations in their respective fields in mud & ice core sampling.

    Easterbrook has said it’s puzzling to him why the ice core data is being ignored even though his work has been corroborated by other ice core data and the correlations are nothing short of amazing.

    Tim Patterson a column on mud-core data which showed a strong correlation between ocean productivity and solar cycles – also anticipating future solar cycles:
    http://www.financialpost.com/story.html?id=597d0677-2a05-47b4-b34f-b84068db11f4

    Lee Rodgers

    April 24, 2008 at 3:47 am

  22. Papertiger,

    Not necessarily. We know, however, that the sun’s conveyor belt has slowed, leading to predictions that cycle 25 will be one of the lowest in centuries. Since our understanding of the Sun and its cycles is still not very good (just look at the predictions for solar cycle 24 at the website below), it is quite possible that _both_ cycle 24 and 25 will be cycles with low activity, mimicing the Dalton minimum in the early 19th century. If cycle 24 doesn’t start until after October 2008, it will be the longest cycle since cycle 4, which was 13.58 years long and immediately preceded the Dalton minimum.

    http://users.telenet.be/j.janssens/SC24.html
    ==========================
    >Papertiger wrote:

    Longer is worse right?

    You’re putting a wet blanket on my good feelings, Kmack.

    Kmack

    April 24, 2008 at 4:23 am

  23. No one wishes the misery that a cold spell would bring to poor people. But unfortunately, due to the fanatcism of green activists, a cold period would be preferable to wacko green policies.
    Once the world gets whacked in the face by a cold spell, it’ll wake up from its warming hysteria, and then switch the added agriculture used to produce biofuels back to producing food for the masses. This resulting food surplus will then bring prices back down to earthly levels.
    But should the earth continue to warm, then kook mitigation policies will surely be enacted and the world will suffer far more immensely.
    View cooling as Divine Intervention.

    Pierre Gosselin

    April 24, 2008 at 7:52 am

  24. #23 Pierre. There’ll be no need by 2020 to get the catastrophists to shut up b/c they will already have been chastened by a proponderance of evidence against dangerous CO2-driven climate change. Backing up the ongoing trend analysis of stabilized global temperatures (a ten year run now…), we have:

    The Aqua satellite findings which are just about ready to upset the entire AGW applecart. Aqua data is showing water vapor stays low as cloud formations and DAMPENS CO2 IR absorption instead of amplifying it. Aqua data shows a limit stop where negative feedback begins (after some positive feedback):
    http://www.nbr.co.nz/article/climate-change-confirmed-global-warming-cancelled

    Stephen Schwartz of Brookhaven showing that the Earth’s climate is only about 1/3rd as sensitive to CO2 as the IPCC claims: http://www.ecd.bnl.gov/steve/pubs/HeatCapacity.pdf

    And a few months ago Spencer released a study on upper-tropospheric temperatures that basically put GCM in the ashcan, prompting James Hansen to stop using climate models in his pronouncements.

    All three studies are spot-on and fully mainstream, fully backed by empirical field data.

    The hypothesis of dangerous AGW fails the test.

    Cheers,
    /leebert

    lee rodgers

    April 24, 2008 at 8:24 pm

  25. > Aqua satellite findings which
    > are just about ready

    You have a pre-release copy? Cite?

    Hank Roberts

    April 24, 2008 at 10:53 pm

  26. Catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW) is based largely on computer models. Computer models are not science, GCMs are not experiments or research. All the hysteria about climate is based on unvalidated computer models.

    Fortunately solar physicists don’t actually know very much about the sun yet. Otherwise they’d be creating SCMs and turning all “research” over to computers.

    It’s as if too many graduates of climate programs either don’t know how to think scientifically, or just don’t want to bother. So they let the GCM’s think for them.

    Al Fin

    April 25, 2008 at 1:49 pm

  27. I’m waiting to see where cycle 24 goes, but I already had a taste of where this next winter (2008/9) is going 😉 La Nina and Solar Minimum … looks like cycle 20 over again at least.

    len

    April 25, 2008 at 6:02 pm

  28. We are now looking at an extended SC 23. SC24 is delayed, and is predicted to be, based on solar data, weak. SC 25 is also predicted to be weak. Thus we can say we are very likely at the start of a solar minimum.
    According to theory, we should begin to see a cooling period. The next few years are going to confirm whether this theory holds water, or is bunk.
    It’ll also cast much light on how much forcing CO2 really has as a greenhouse gas. Yes! We are witnessing a very interesting experiment – now taking place!
    We are now very possibly in the transition from strong solar activity to weak solar activty. Will this lead to cooling? Or will the CO2 cause warming? Looking at the latest ocean temperatures, sea ice amounts, and satellite tropospheric temperature data, I’d say the solar theorists are way ahead of the CO2 theorists (at least for now).

    I hear 50/50 chances…of what!!
    That we are entering a solar minimum?
    Or that we are entering a cool period?

    Pierre Gosselin

    April 26, 2008 at 10:24 am

  29. @len
    The E. Pacific SST near South and Central America appear to be warming again…thus putting cold water on your La Nina prediction.
    http://www.osdpd.noaa.gov/PSB/EPS/SST/climo&hot.html
    (Compare to the months before).

    Pierre Gosselin

    April 26, 2008 at 10:28 am

  30. @Papertiger
    Why should you despair at the notion we may be getting cooler. Haven’t you heard? We’re headed right now for a CO2 induced global warming catstrophe. Cooling will only mean going back to the climate of the good ol days of the 19th century. Cheer up!

    Pierre Gosselin

    April 26, 2008 at 11:22 am

  31. @30 Pierre

    I am more concerned about going back to the climate of the good ol days of the 17th century.

    The combined effects of peak oil and food shortages would unleash some ugly confrontations.

    Dee Norris

    April 26, 2008 at 12:07 pm

  32. To put the whole Climate Change issue into perspective vis-a-vis the Peak Oil Crisis, everyone needs to ask themselves, their associates, all sitting elected officials and those seeking office, especially the office of President of the United States, “What is more threatening in both the long and short terms, a beneficial 1 degree F rise in average world temperatures over the past 100 years, or a 1 percent decline in world oil production over the last 100 weeks – with steepening declines forecast? Furthermore, can our economy better deal with declining fuel inventories in an environment of persistent warming, or in an environment of declining average temperatures over the next several decades, the most likely scenario given the highly reliable solar inertial motion (SIM) model forecasts of climate change?” Solar cycle # 24 will tell the tale. The problem is not AGW. The real problem is the end of cyclical warming coincident with the onset of Peak Oil. Everyone will make their Kyoto target, whether they plan to or not.

    John A. Jauregui

    May 2, 2008 at 7:21 am

  33. A question…

    Looking to go to Alaska in September to see Northern Lights. Will Sun spot activity be good this year?

    Thanks for any advice.

    Mark

    May 28, 2008 at 12:00 am

  34. There were three recently published papers that predicted a solar magnetic cycle change to a Dalton or Maunder like minimum, for cycle 24: one analyzed past solar barycentre motion which correlates with deep solar magnetic cycle minimums, a second based on an analysis of the paleo cosmogenic isotopes (again that correlate with deep solar cycle minimums), and a third based on a physical model.

    The following is the 2004 paper that predicts the sun is heading towards a Maunder minimum based on an analysis of the paleo record of solar activity.

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2004ApJ…605L..81B

    This is the 2003 paper that predicts a solar cycle minimum based on a physical model.

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2003SPD….34.0603S

    This is the 1987 Solar barycentre motion paper: Prolonged minima and the 179-yr cycle of the solar inertial motion by R.Fairbridge and J. Shirley

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/w57236105034h657/

    The solar barycentre motion theory hypothesizes that specific motions of the sun about its barycentre, interrupts the formation of the magnetic ropes at the solar tacholine (Tacholine is the interface to solar radiative zone and convection zone.) With the barycentre hypothesis a Maunder minimum is an interruption to the solar magnetic cycle as opposed to a slow down.

    There is data and analysis that supports the assertion that there is an increase in planetary cloud cover over the oceans when there is an galactic cosmic rays. GCR increases when there is a reduction the heliosphere which occurs when the solar magnetic cycle slows down or is interrupted. There is evidence in the paleoclimatic data (abrupt cycle cooling) that correlates with the long term solar magnetic cycle changes (determined by measuring variance in cosmogenic isotopes.)

    Svensmark is only one of an number of researchers make that assertion the ice epoch and the glacial/interglacial cycle is triggered by the solar cycle changes.

    William Astley

    June 6, 2008 at 5:00 am

  35. There does appear to be evidence for a solar cycle interruption. (See comments below.)

    Based on recent research (Tinsley, Yu, Palle, Svensmark, Shaviv, and so on.) a solar magnetic cycle interruption will result in long term higher GCR (Galactic Cosmic Rays) levels. The research I have seen shows that the increased ions produced by higher levels of GCR, will increase the amount of clouds over the oceans (atmosphere above the ocean is ion poor as compared to the atmosphere above the continents, as the continental rock is slightly radioactive.) More clouds colder planet, less clouds warmer planet.

    Comments:
    There were three recently published papers that predicted a solar magnetic cycle change to a Dalton or Maunder like minimum, for cycle 24: one analyzed past solar barycentre motion which correlates with deep solar magnetic cycle minimums, a second based on an analysis of the paleo cosmogenic isotopes (again that correlate with deep solar cycle minimums), and a third based on a physical model.

    The following is the 2004 paper that predicts the sun is heading towards a Maunder minimum based on an analysis of the paleo record of solar activity.

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2004ApJ…605L..81B

    This is the 2003 paper that predicts a solar cycle minimum based on a physical model.

    http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/2003SPD….34.0603S

    This is the 1987 Solar barycentre motion paper: Prolonged minima and the 179-yr cycle of the solar inertial motion by R.Fairbridge and J. Shirley

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/w57236105034h657/

    The solar barycentre motion theory hypothesizes that specific motions of the sun about its barycentre, interrupts the formation of the magnetic ropes at the solar tacholine (Tacholine is the interface to solar radiative zone and convection zone.) With the barycentre hypothesis a Maunder minimum is an interruption to the solar magnetic cycle as opposed to a slow down.)

    William

    June 6, 2008 at 12:24 pm

  36. During a recent visit to NZ I noted the dramatic retreats of the Frans Joseph and Fox glaciers since around 1750 to present positions. CAGW due to greenhouse gases does not reconcile too well with the melt and deposition rates. Perhaps CAGW advocates might explain why this is so.
    Solar driven climate change data does appear to provide some answers. The inevitable unfolding of cycle 23/24 transition will hopefully provide more answers……and maybe some scientifically based truths into the debate.

    David

    June 11, 2008 at 1:41 am

  37. According to the late John Daly, the Franz Josef glacier recently expanded since the late 1960s. I must dig out the reference for that.

    John A

    June 12, 2008 at 2:12 am

  38. If Sun Spot Cycle continues to be a nonstarter I recommend the period be called “The Al Gore minimum”. Hopefully he can read about it through prison bars.

    CommanderBill

    June 28, 2008 at 4:35 am

  39. Mark, we are currently at or about the solar minimum. Unfortunately it is less likely that you will see a good solar lights display in September, they should be better in 3-4 years at the next maximum.

    JonnyH

    July 9, 2008 at 10:54 am

  40. I just returned from visiting Yellowstone and was struck by the devastation of the 1988 fires, which were preceeded by acute drought and record setting dry lightening. I began to wonder what solar activity occured leading up the 1988 fire storms. Solar cycle 22 started just a couple of years before that summer of drought and dry lightening. Check this out. Relative to other cycles, that solar cycle had 1) a very fast rise time – 2.8 years, 2) a very short cycle length – 9.7 years, 3) a high minimum sun spot number – 12.3, and 4) a high maximum sun spot number – 158.5
    more:
    “Cycle 22 certainly provided us with many highlights. Early in the cycle the smoothed sunspot number (determined by the number of sunspots visible on the sun and used as the traditional measure of the cycle) climbed rapidly; in fact more rapidly than for any previously recorded cycle. This caused many to predict that it would eclipse Cycle 19 (peak sunspot number of 201) as the highest cycle on record. This was not to be as the sunspot number ceased climbing in early 1989 and reached a maximum in July of that year. Whilst not of record amplitude, Cycle 22 still rated as 4th of the recorded cycles and continued the run of recent large solar cycles (Cycles 18, 19 and 21 were all exceptional!). A very notable feature of Cycle 22 was that it had the shortest rise from minimum to maximum of any recorded cycle.”
    Material Prepared by Richard Thompson. © Copyright IPS – Radio and Space Services.

    John A. Jauregui

    October 10, 2008 at 4:52 am

  41. I’m glad to read the comments to this article. To sum up my addition to the above views, it isn’t a matter of how long the solar cycle is, but how strong it is. We are already experiencing solar cycle 24, but it is turning out to be extremely weak in irradiance. The Dalton Minimum still had sunspots, but significantly fewer than other cycles.

    In light of the fact that we ARE in cycle 24, the Sun IS undergoing a significant change in behavior as seen in the lower sunspot count.

    Just from a visual inspection of daily ocean temperature charts, it appears ocean temperatures are already cooling this year. The thermal momentum of the poles is already declining. News outlets made a big deal out of this year being the second greatest thawing extent of the Arctic Ocean. Yet, being second means the thawing peaked last year and colder seasons are already beginning to return. Apparently, the Maunder and Dalton Minimum’s were gradual cooling events, too. The coldest years came well after the solar activity subsided.

    It can’t hurt to develop the habit of storing more food and medicine than we normally do, and rotating the stock.

    David Thomson

    October 15, 2008 at 12:30 am

  42. […] citando le parole del Prof. Ken Tapping il quale in data 17-Marzo-2008 sul sito “http://solarscience.auditblogs.com/2008/04/22/ken-tapping-the-current-solar-minimum/” ha detto: Al momento è INGIUSTIFICATO AFFERMARE che nel Sole è in corso un cambiamento […]

    [WORDPRESS HASHCASH] The comment’s server IP (66.135.48.207) doesn’t match the comment’s URL host IP (76.74.254.123) and so is spam.

  43. […] Comments Il dato “SSN” per la valutazione del minimo solare « New ice age on Ken Tapping: The Current Solar MinimumKozak on Hathaway announces the bleeding obviousMock Tudor on Hathaway announces the bleeding […]

    [WORDPRESS HASHCASH] The comment’s actual post text did not contain your blog url (http://solarscience.auditblogs.com/2008/04/22/ken-tapping-the-current-solar-minimum) and so is spam.


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