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Latest Solar cycle Stories

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2010-02-10 13:40:00

For some years now, an unorthodox idea has been gaining favor among astronomers. It contradicts old teachings and unsettles thoughtful observers, especially climatologists. "The sun," explains Lika Guhathakurta of NASA headquarters in Washington DC, "is a variable star." But it looks so constant... That's only a limitation of the human eye. Modern telescopes and spacecraft have penetrated the sun's blinding glare and found a maelstrom of unpredictable turmoil. Solar flares explode with the...

2010-02-04 16:17:12

A $32 million University of Colorado at Boulder instrument package set for launch Feb. 9 by NASA should help scientists better understand the violent effects of the sun on near-Earth space weather that can affect satellites, power grids, ground communications systems and even astronauts and aircraft crews. The CU-Boulder Extreme Ultraviolet Variability Experiment, or EVE, will fly on NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory known as SDO, the space agency's first mission as part of its "Living With a...

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2009-11-01 05:56:58

On August 1, 2008 a total solar eclipse was visible within a narrow corridor that traversed from North America to China. The path of the Moon's umbral shadow started from Canada and extended across northern Greenland, the Arctic, central Russia, Mongolia, and China. A partial eclipse was seen within the much broader path of the Moon's penumbral shadow, which included northeastern part of North America, most parts of Europe and Asia. At a solar physics meeting, held in Kunming, China in the...

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2009-10-28 06:15:00

Every 11 years, the sun undergoes a furious upheaval. Dark sunspots burst forth from beneath the sun's surface. Explosions as powerful as a billion atomic bombs spark intense flares of high-energy radiation. Clouds of gas big enough to swallow planets break away from the sun and billow into space. It's a flamboyant display of stellar power. So why can't we see any of it? Almost none of the drama of Solar Maximum is visible to the human eye. Look at the sun in the noontime sky...

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2009-09-17 09:21:46

Challenging conventional wisdom, new research finds that the number of sunspots provides an incomplete measure of changes in the Sun's impact on Earth over the course of the 11-year solar cycle. The study, led by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the University of Michigan, finds that Earth was bombarded last year with high levels of solar energy at a time when the Sun was in an unusually quiet phase and sunspots had virtually disappeared. "The Sun...

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2009-09-03 15:14:15

The sun is in the pits of the deepest solar minimum in nearly a century. Weeks and sometimes whole months go by without even a single tiny sunspot. The quiet has dragged out for more than two years, prompting some observers to wonder, are sunspots disappearing? "Personally, I'm betting that sunspots are coming back," says researcher Matt Penn of the National Solar Observatory (NSO) in Tucson, Arizona. But, he allows, "there is some evidence that they won't." Penn's colleague Bill Livingston...

3b7fa2a2e5015f2b0ec8bbe129c0a6931
2009-08-28 14:45:00

Researchers from NCAR have created the first-ever model to simulate the impact of the sun's radiation fluctuations on the earth's climate. Scientists have long known that the sun does not radiate evenly. The best known example of radiation fluctuations is the famous 11-year cycle of sun spots. But experts have previously been unable to create a model that would depict how uneven radiation would impact the earth's climate. "Small changes in the sun's output over the 11-year solar cycle have...

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2009-08-27 15:00:00

Subtle connections between the 11-year-solar cycle, the stratosphere and the tropical Pacific Ocean work in sync to generate periodic weather patterns that affect much of the globe, according to research results appearing this week in the journal Science. The findings will help scientists get an edge on predicting the intensity of certain climate phenomena, such as the Indian monsoon and tropical Pacific rainfall, years in advance. "It's been long known that weather patterns are...

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2009-07-16 11:35:00

Establishing a key link between the solar cycle and global climate, research led by scientists at the National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, Colo., shows that maximum solar activity and its aftermath have impacts on Earth that resemble La Niña and El Niño events in the tropical Pacific Ocean.The research may pave the way toward predictions of temperature and precipitation patterns at...

2009-07-06 23:34:44

Cooler than average weather patterns in the U.S. northeast, attributed to the solar cycle, will likely persist for the rest of the summer, forecasters said. There will be spikes of summer weather, AccuWeather.com reported Monday, but weather patterns that have prevailed so far will probably last. This year represents a low point for sunspots, NASA said. Studies indicate the lower the sunspots, the less bright the sun, which could translate to less heating of Earth, although many other factors...


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.