Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Year Of The Missing Sunspot

The number of days that have not had a sunspot this year now exceeds 200. To find a year with more blank suns, you have to go back to 1954, when the sun was blank 241 times.

So, Astronomers who count sunspots have announced that 2008 is now the "blankest year" of the Space Age.

In fact, if the current trend continues, 2008 could total 290 spotless days by the end of December, making it nearly a century since we have seen such a lack of activity fom our sun.

In addition, the quiet sun coincides with the dimmest sun scientists have ever recorded, and a low in solar wind pressure. Sunspots are the result of the Sun’s magnetic field tearing ‘holes’ into its surface. Meteorologists use the arrival and disappearance of sunspots to gauge how active solar cycles will be.

What does the current lack of activity on the sun mean? It could mean that scientists can test their various theories concerning the relationship between the sun and global climate change. It also may mean that much colder times for the planet are just ahead.

The fact is that during the last 1000 years, a weak or non existent sunspot cycle can be linked directly to three global temperature events called the Dalton, Maunder, and Spörer Minimums. Each of these events led to a rapid cooling of the planet. One was large enough to be called a “mini ice age”.

Meanwhile, Al Gore continues to achieve publicity in his role as man-made global warming alarmist. Gore was widely quoted last week, in a speech at the Clinton Global Initiative as follows:

"If you're a young person looking at the future of this planet and looking at what is being done right now, and not done, I believe we have reached the stage where it is time for civil disobedience to prevent the construction of new coal plants that do not have carbon capture and sequestration."

Since there is no real evidence that global warming is man-made, (See: A Nobel Peace Prize And A Weather Balloon on it may be possible to prove that global climate change is really a function of the activity surrounding the cycles of the sun in the years directly ahead.

Certainly, such a discovery would save billions of dollars worldwide, and may put an end to a future of man-made global warming civil unrest.


Tad said...

Dalton, Sporer and Maunder are names for "global temperature events"??

Those are names for periods of sunspot minimum, and they do not correlate well with worldwide climate, despite some of the nonsense I've been seeing recently. The so-called "Little Ice Age" was a local event, not worldwide.

The article mentioned we've seen 200 days with no sunspots, but this is not unusual for a solar cycle minimum. The minimum in 1954 with many more spotless days preceded by far the largest sunspot cycle ever recorded, cycle 19, which peaked around 1959.

I am not saying this means we are in for another big cycle. But lack of sunspots at cycle minimum is not a useful indicator of future solar activity.

For more about sun and climate:

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