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Latest Solar cycle Stories

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2011-08-19 07:55:00

Researchers at Reading University said that solar storms are likely to become more disruptive to planes and spacecraft within decades. The team predicts that once the Sun shifts towards an era of lower solar activity, more hazardous radiation will reach Earth. The researchers said in Geophysical Research Letters that the Sun is currently at a grand solar maximum, which is a phase that began in the 1920s. Mike Lockwood, professor of space environment physics at Reading, said in a statement:...

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2011-07-28 08:05:00

A new study sheds light on why the Sun's outer atmosphere, or corona, is more than 20 times hotter than its surface. The research, led by the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), may bring scientists a step closer to understanding the solar cycle and the Sun's impacts on Earth. The study uses satellite observations to reveal that magnetic oscillations carrying energy from the Sun's surface into its corona are far more vigorous than previously thought. These waves are energetic...

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2011-06-23 06:30:00

By Dr. Tony Phillips - Science@NASA In Sept. 1859, on the eve of a below-average1 solar cycle, the sun unleashed one of the most powerful storms in centuries. The underlying flare was so unusual, researchers still aren't sure how to categorize it.  The blast peppered Earth with the most energetic protons in half-a-millennium, induced electrical currents that set telegraph offices on fire, and sparked Northern Lights over Cuba and Hawaii. This week, officials have gathered at the National...

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2011-06-14 11:25:00

Since 1611, humans have recorded the comings and goings of black spots on the sun. The number of these sunspots waxes and wanes over approximately an 11-year cycle -- more sunspots generally mean more activity and eruptions on the sun and vice versa. The number of sunspots can change from cycle to cycle, and 2008 saw the longest and weakest solar minimum since scientists have been monitoring the sun with space-based instruments. Observations have shown, however, that magnetic effects on Earth...

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2011-06-10 10:17:04

ESA's Proba-2 small Sun-watcher was among the flotilla of satellites on watch as the Sun erupted spectacularly this week. After years of relative quietness, the Sun is waking up. Tuesday 7 June saw a medium-class M2.5 solar flare, associated with a proton storm, a coronal mass ejection that glanced past Earth on Thursday 9 June and an accompanying burst of radio energy. ESA's Proba-2 satellite was launched in November 2009, during the most inactive period of the solar cycle, but now the Sun...

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2011-04-20 10:09:54

Researchers at the University of Central Lancashire studied the largest solar flare recorded in nearly five years. The solar eruption in February was caused by five rotating sunspots working in concert, BBC News reports. Solar flares are eruptions on the surface of the sun which begin as concentrated magnetic fields and are visible as sunspots. As the magnetic fields build up, they twist and erupt, releasing vast amounts of heat, light and radiation."Twisting the Sun's magnetic field is like...

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2011-04-15 09:05:00

By Dr. Tony Phillips - Science@NASA If you've ever stood in front of a hot stove, watching a pot of water and waiting impatiently for it to boil, you know what it feels like to be a solar physicist. Back in 2008, the solar cycle plunged into the deepest minimum in nearly a century. Sunspots all but vanished, solar flares subsided, and the sun was eerily quiet. "Ever since, we've been waiting for solar activity to pick up," says Richard Fisher, head of the Heliophysics Division at NASA...

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2011-03-09 14:11:59

By Karen C. Fox, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center In March of 1611, a German medical student named Johannes Fabricius left school at Leiden in Holland carrying several of the new-fangled telescopes that were beginning to appear in the Netherlands. He was off to visit his father "“ the well-known astronomer and astrologer David Fabricius who had had a heralded career working with Europe's celebrity astronomers, Tycho Brahe and Johannes Kepler. In 1611, David Fabricius lived in Osteel,...

2011-03-02 12:48:00

WASHINGTON, March 2, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA-sponsored research has resulted in the first computer model that explains the recent period of decreased solar activity during the sun's 11-year cycle. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) This recent solar minimum, a period characterized by a lower frequency of sunspots and solar storms, was the deepest observed in almost 100 years. The solar minimum has repercussions on the safety of space travel and...

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2011-03-02 14:05:00

Researchers today provided the first computer model explaining the recent period of decreased solar activity during the Sun's 11-year cycle. This recent solar minimum was the deepest observed in about 100 years. The solar minimum has repercussions on the safety of space travel and the amount of orbital debris our planet accumulates. NASA said that scientists around the world were puzzled by the extended disappearances of sunspots in 2008 through 2009. "Plasma currents deep inside the sun...


Latest Solar cycle Reference Libraries

How Solar Cycles Impact Our Weather Here On Earth
2013-01-13 09:10:34

Solar cycles: what are they and why should we care about them? Solar cycles are made up of what are known as solar minimums (min) and solar maximums (max). We refer to a solar min at the time when the sun is not active with many sunspots, while a solar max is just the opposite when we see a large increase in sunspot activity. So how long do solar cycles last? Typically they run on what is known as an 11 year cycle from the max to the min and then start over again anew. As of 2012 we...

4_641fa07d2f22a90aec48fb5581337d772
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Solar Maximum -- The Sun, a roiling ball of plasma, occupies its place in space approximately 93 million miles from Earth. Though it seems simple to inhabitants of this planet -- the Sun shines, giving light and heat -- the processes occurring in the Sun are so complex that many scientists devote their careers to just one aspect of solar activity. Changes in the activity of the Sun particularly engage solar scientists. Whether fluctuations in the solar magnetic field, expulsions of...

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Word of the Day
omadhaun
  • A fool; a simpleton: a term of abuse common in Ireland and to a less extent in the Gaelic-speaking parts of Scotland.
This word is partly Irish in origin.