Author Topic: Solar cycles will peak in 2012 – the devastation can be severe as 400-year cycle  (Read 14695 times)

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Offline Jimmy Deguara

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Solar cycles will peak in 2012 – the devastation can be severe as 400-year cycle repeats itself

Now this is an interesting topic and here is the original article that prompted it.

Take a look at this article which really prompted it - it goes to show to what extent words can get twisted:

A link from that article leads to this which is slightly closer to the article above.


Jimmy Deguara
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Offline Steven

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Doesn't sound to good to me, I wonder if it poses a risk to the population or something. Also in 2014 an asteroid is predicted to hit earth but you don't hear much talk of that.

Offline Antonio (stormboy)

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I have read the recent article stating some development of the first sunspots

Offline Antonio (stormboy)

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here is a most recent update

Prepared jointly by the U.S. Dept. of Commerce, NOAA,
Space Weather Prediction Center and the U.S. Air Force.
Updated 2009 Feb 28 2201 UTC

Joint USAF/NOAA Report of Solar and Geophysical Activity
SDF Number 059 Issued at 2200Z on 28 Feb 2009

IA.  Analysis of Solar Active Regions and Activity from  27/2100Z
to 28/2100Z:  Solar activity was very low with no flares observed.
The visible solar disk was spotless.  A slow moving, asymmetric CME
was first observed in LASCO C2 imagery lifting off the NW limb at

IB.  Solar Activity Forecast:  Solar activity is expected to be very

IIA.  Geophysical Activity Summary 27/2100Z to 28/2100Z:
The geomagnetic field was at mostly quiet levels.  Solar winds speeds
decayed steadily throughout the summary period from a high of near
700 km/s to a low of about 500 km/s.  The Bz component of the IMF
remained mostly north (+2 to +4 nT) for a majority of the period.

IIB.  Geophysical Activity Forecast:  The geomagnetic field is
expected to be quiet for days one and two of the forecast period (01
- 02 March).  By day three (03 March), activity levels are expected
to increase to quiet to unsettled, with isolated active periods
possible at high latitudes.  This increase in activity is due to a
coronal hole high speed stream that is expected to rotate into a
geoeffective position.  The CME mentioned earlier is not expected to
be geoeffective.

III.  Event Probabilities 01 Mar-03 Mar
Class M    01/01/01
Class X    01/01/01
Proton     01/01/01
PCAF       Green

IV.  Penticton 10.7 cm Flux
Observed           28 Feb 071
Predicted   01 Mar-03 Mar  070/070/070
90 Day Mean        28 Feb 070

V.  Geomagnetic A Indices
Observed Afr/Ap 27 Feb  007/008
Estimated Afr/Ap 28 Feb  005/006
Predicted Afr/Ap 01 Mar-03 Mar  005/005-005/005-008/008

VI.  Geomagnetic Activity Probabilities 01 Mar-03 Mar
A.  Middle Latitudes
Active                05/05/15
Minor storm           01/01/01
Major-severe storm    01/01/01
B.  High Latitudes
Active                10/10/20
Minor storm           01/01/10
Major-severe storm    01/01/01

Offline Richary

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I wonder where the heck they got that. Radio is my main hobby so I am across solar cycles. The predictions I have seen before are that it will be a quier cycle (it is taking a long time starting) and by 2050 we may go into a period with no solar activity leading to a mini ice age. These articles are proposing the opposite.


Offline Antonio (stormboy)

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Solar Cycle 24 Begins


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Jan. 10, 2008: Hang on to your cell phone, a new solar cycle has just begun.

"On January 4, 2008, a reversed-polarity sunspot appeared—and this signals the start of Solar Cycle 24," says David Hathaway of the Marshall Space Flight Center.

Above: Images of the first sunspot of Solar Cycle 24 taken by the NASA/ESA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO). [Larger image] [Movie]

Solar activity waxes and wanes in 11-year cycles. Lately, we've been experiencing the low ebb, "very few flares, sunspots, or activity of any kind," says Hathaway. "Solar minimum is upon us."

The previous solar cycle, Solar Cycle 23, peaked in 2000-2002 with many furious solar storms. That cycle decayed as usual to the present quiet leaving solar physicists little to do other than wonder, when would the next cycle begin?

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The answer is now.
"New solar cycles always begin with a high-latitude, reversed polarity sunspot," explains Hathaway. "Reversed polarity" means a sunspot with opposite magnetic polarity compared to sunspots from the previous solar cycle. "High-latitude" refers to the sun's grid of latitude and longitude. Old cycle spots congregate near the sun's equator. New cycle spots appear higher, around 25 or 30 degrees latitude.

The sunspot that appeared on January 4th fits both these criteria. It was high latitude (30 degrees N) and magnetically reversed. NOAA named the spot AR10981, or "sunspot 981" for short.

Sunspot 981 was small--only about as wide as Earth, which counts as small on the grand scale of the sun--and it has already faded away. But its three day appearance on Jan. 4-6 was enough to convince most solar physicists that Solar Cycle 24 is underway.

Doug Biesecker of NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center in Boulder, Colorado, likens sunspot 981 "to the first robin of spring. There's still snow on the ground, but the seasons are changing." Last year, Biesecker chaired the Solar Cycle 24 Prediction Panel, an international group of experts from many universities and government agencies. "We predicted that Solar Cycle 24 would begin around March 2008 and it looks like we weren't far off," he says.

Right: The first auroras of the new solar cycle, photographed Jan. 4, 2008, by Calvin Hall of Palmer, Alaska. [more]

The onset of a new solar cycle is significant because of our increasingly space-based technological society.

"Solar storms can disable satellites that we depend on for weather forecasts and GPS navigation," says Hathaway. Radio bursts from solar flares can directly interfere with cell phone reception while coronal mass ejections (CMEs) hitting Earth can cause electrical power outages. "The most famous example is the Quebec outage of 1989, which left some Canadians without power for as much as six days."

Air travel can be affected, too.

Every year, intercontinental flights carry thousands of passengers over Earth’s poles. It's the shortest distance between, say, New York and Tokyo or Beijing and Chicago. In 1999, United Airlines made just twelve trips over the Arctic. By 2005, the number of flights had ballooned to 1,402. Other airlines report similar growth.

"Solar storms have a big effect on polar regions of our planet," says Steve Hill of the Space Weather Prediction Center. "When airplanes fly over the poles during solar storms, they can experience radio blackouts, navigation errors and computer reboots all caused by space radiation." Avoiding the poles during solar storms solves the problem, but it costs extra time, money and fuel to "take the long way around."

Above: An increasing number of international business flights cross Earth's Arctic to save time, fuel and money. [Larger image]

Now for the good news: More solar storms also means more auroras—"the greatest show on Earth." During the last solar maximum, Northern Lights were spotted as far south as Arizona, Florida and California. Not so long ago, only visitors to the Arctic regularly enjoyed auroras, but with increasing attention to space weather and constantly improving forecasts, millions of people at all latitudes will know when to go out and look.

Much of this is still years away. "Intense solar activity won't begin immediately," notes Hathaway. "Solar cycles usually take a few years to build from solar minimum (where we are now) to Solar Max, expected in 2011 or 2012."

It's a slow journey, but we're on our way.


Offline Paul D

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Back in late 2008 contrary to predictions of another big solar cycle I was interested to hear a prediction (by Dr Ken McCracken) that the next two solar cycles would be quite leading to a cooler period during this time similar to the 1900-10 period coined the "Gleissberg Minimum"
Like the last four posts have suggested it looks like this is the scenario which is developing.-

NASA current predictions

current predictions :-

Site looking at previous NASA predictions (as at Jan 2011)

Graph from site above ( of nasas previous changes in predictions:- to Jan 2011