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astronomy climate change Physics

Solar sunspot cycle 24 just ended

The 11-year sunspot cycle number 24 has just ended. We are entering sunspot cycle 25. The number of sunspots has been decreasing over the past 3 cycles which has been about 4 decades. See plot below.

Note cycles 20 to 22, with an increase in peak sunspot number, is the same period that global warming has been claimed to be most significant . Then from cycle 22 to cycle 24 we see a decrease, but also there have been reports of global cooling, most significantly in the last decade or so.

Here I have labelled the peaks with number assigned to each sunspot cycle. On the left vertical axis is the 13-month smoothed number of sunspots. This is equivalent to yearly average. Colours indicate the fact that north and south hemisphere exhibit different numbers of sunspots. Data are available here.
Categories
Age of the Earth Physics Politics Science

The sun has gone blank!

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Figure 1: The more usual picture of the sun with flares, and other turbulent activity. Lower right is a mid-level solar flare imaged on Nov. 12, 2012.

As predicted, by John L. Casey and several others, including my analysis,1 we are entering a period of massively reduced sunspot activity. This may have significant ramifications for weather on this planet. Reduce sunspots means reduced solar activity and hence reduced solar flares and other associated solar activity. A new article, headlined with “The sun has gone blank twice this month. This is what it means”, reports2 that we are now seeing the sun some days with no sunspots and none of the grainy turbulence features as shown in Fig. 1.

The news report2

According to scientists, this unsettling phenomenon is a sign we are heading for a mini ice age.

Meteorologist and renowned sun-watcher Paul Dorian raised the alarm in his latest report, which has sparked a mild panic about an impending Game of Thrones-style winter not seen since the 17th century.

For the second time this month, the sun has gone completely blank,” Mr Dorian says.

The blank sun is a sign that the next solar minimum is approaching and there will be an increasing number of spotless days over the next few years.

At first, the blankness will stretch for just a few days at a time, then it’ll continue for weeks at a time, and finally it should last for months at a time when the sunspot cycle reaches its nadir. The next solar minimum phase is expected to take place around 2019 or 2020.”

Categories
Age of the Earth Politics

Global cooling coming

You think this southern hemisphere winter is cold, according to Professor Valentina Zharkova,1 reported on Channel 9 News here in Australia, solar activity, such as sunspots, will drop up to 60 percent by 2030 and plunge the planet into a mini Ice Age.2,3 She makes the connection in her research between solar irradiance and the earth’s weather and sunspots are an indication of the cyclic activity of the sun.

Snow in Australia might become a more common sight with a mini-Ice Age coming in 15 years. Credit: www.9news.com
Snow in Australia might become a more common sight with a mini-Ice Age coming in 15 years.
Credit: http://www.9news.com

In only 15 years time we should be in the middle of a mini-Ice Age. After this weekend in Adelaide, South Australia–located on the edge of the Antarctic Ocean–I am inclined to believe such a report. It has been cold!

This is the same prediction that John L. Casey made in his bookDark Winter, How the Sun Is Causing a 30-Year Cold Spell” where he predicted a period of extreme cold by the year 2030. In fact, he predicts it will last 30 years, a period similar to the “Dalton Minimum” around 1810 or even worse, the “Maunder minimum”, which lasted from 1645 to 1715.