Solar Activity – Past, Present, Future

This image is a full-disk view of the X-ray Su...

This image is a full-disk view of the X-ray Sun and was produced by the Yohkoh solar observatory in 1991. The structures that can be seen consist of large and hot (>2MK) coronal magnetic structures. This particular image, one of millions, shows a quite active corona from near the maximum of the solar cycle. At the upper right (solar northwest) one can see an “X-ray jet”) squirting outwards – this was one of Yohkoh’s original discoveries. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Essay/paper by Dr. Leif Svalgaard

Abstract

As our civilization depends increasingly on space-borne assets and on a delicate and vulnerable earth-bound infrastructure, solar activity and its potential impact becomes of increasing importance and relevance. In his famous paper on the Maunder Minimum, Eddy (1976) introduced the notion that the Sun is a variable star on long time scales. After the recent decade of vigorous research based on cosmic ray and sunspot data as well as on geomagnetic activity, an emerging consensus reconstruction of solar wind magnetic field strength has been forged for the last century. The consensus reconstruction shows reasonable agreement among the various reconstructions of solar wind magnetic field the past ~170 years.

New magnetic indices open further possibilities for the exploitation of historic data. The solar wind is a direct result of solar magnetic activity providing an important link to the effects on the Earth’s environment. Reassessment of the sunspot series (no Modern Grand Maximum) and new reconstructions of Total Solar Irradiance also contribute to our improved knowledge (or at least best guess) of the environment of the Earth System, with obvious implications for management of space-based technological assets or, perhaps, even climate. Several lines of evidence suggest that the Sun is entering a period of low activity, perhaps even a Grand Minimum. Average space weather might be ‘‘milder’’ with decreased solar activity, but the extreme events that dominate technological effects are not expected to disappear. Prediction of solar activity has a poor track record, but the progression of the current Cycle 24 is in accordance with its behaviour predicted from the evolution of the solar polar fields, so perhaps there is hope.

Introduction

Solar activity is the result of solar magnetic fields.

If our Sun had no magnetic field it would be as dull as models of stellar constitution proscribe and we would not have this conference. The magnetic field makes the Sun interesting, which before the development of our technological civilization was of little consequence, but that the Sun is a variable magnetic star is today of immense practical importance; in fact, a potential danger to our modern way of life. Increasingly, our civilization depends on environmental conditions, communication devices, and infrastructures that are vulnerable to solar magnetic variability [NRC, 2008]. The famous Carrington Event in 1859 [e.g. Cliver & Svalgaard, 2004] can be said to mark the birth of this concern, although the technological effects, some even damaging with attendant economics loss, of geomagnetic disturbances [accompanied by brilliant aurorae] on the nascent telegraph communication capability were already noted more than a decade before.

To assess the impact of solar activity and the chances of effective mitigation of its effect we need to monitor and understand not only current space weather, but also space climatology: what is the equivalent of a ‘hundred-year flood’? Direct telescopic observation of solar activity, of course, begins with the discovery 402 years ago of sunspots. Our understanding of that historical record forms the basis for interpreting the indirect evidence both from natural archives (e.g. 10Be from ice cores) and human naked-eye observations (aurorae, 日誌 [ri-zhi] blemishes on the sun) stretching much farther back in time.

The Sunspot Record(s)

The historical sunspot record was first put together by Rudolf Wolf in 1850s and has been continued by Wolf and his successors followed by a more ‘institutionalized’ approach later in the 20th century until today and hopefully beyond. Wolf’s original definition of the Relative Sunspot Number for a given day as R = 10 Number of Groups + Number of Spots visible on the solar disk has stood the test of time and recognizes [in Wolf’s own words] that the emergence of a coherent group of spots (an active region) is much more important than the addition of yet a few spots to an existing group. The factor of 10 has also turned out to be a good choice as historically a group contained on average ten spots.

A fundamental problem is the homogeneity of the series, that is: does a relative sunspot number of 100 mean the same level of solar activity today as it did in 1938, in 1872, or in 1739? And what is a useful definition of ‘solar activity’ anyway? From the viewpoint of solar effects on our technological infrastructure, the solar wind – the ever present expanding outer atmosphere of the Sun – is perhaps the most relevant element, although bursts of highly energetic particles and radiation also degrade devices and spacecraft and threaten humans in space. Almost all solar indices and solar wind quantities show a relationship with the Relative Sunspot Number [SSN], so homogeneity and proper calibration of the SSN become of utmost importance.

Hoyt et al. [1994] in a series of papers at the centenary of Wolf’s death asked “Do we have the correct reconstruction of solar activity?” and proposed to answer the question in the negative. A heroic effort from an extensive search of archives and primary sources yielded ~350,000 observations, many not available to Wolf, covering the interval 1610-1993. An earlier study showed that the ratio of individual spots to groups is nearly a constant. Theoretical arguments [Schaefer, 1993] showed that Wolf’s Relative Sunspot Number may be set equal to a constant times the number of sunspot groups, so an index based solely on the number of sunspot groups can simulate the Wolf SSN. Hoyt & Schatten called this index the Group Sunspot Number [GSN] and found that it appears that solar activity has steadily increased since 1700 to what might be called a Modern Grand Maximum in the latter part of the 20th century. Before ~1885 the GSN is significantly smaller than the Wolf SSN which does not support the idea of a Modern Grand Maximum. This discrepancy is not satisfactory and must be resolved so solar-terrestrial researchers have a stable and unique dataset to work with.

Recognizing the need to resolve this issue, a number of workshops on the calibration of the sunspot number have been sponsored by the National Solar Observatory (NSO), the Royal Observatory of Belgium (ROB), and the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) as an effort to provide the solar community with a vetted long-term (single) sunspot number series and the tools to keep it on track. The first workshop was held at Sunspot, New Mexico [yes, there is such a place] in September 2011, followed by a second workshop in Brussels in May 2012. Further meetings will take place in 2013 in Tucson, AZ and then in Switzerland. We are considering a special Topical Issue of Solar Physics for the eventual joint publication of the SSN series and the accompanying historical, procedural, and scientific papers. In this paper, I’ll report on the progress made so far.

An efficient way of comparing the Wolf Sunspot Number and the Group Sunspot Number is to plot the ratio between them as shown in Figure 1. That removes most of the solar cycle variation and will show obvious discontinuities caused by non-solar related changes in the calibration. Figure 1 shows two clear discontinuities, one near 1945 and one near 1885.

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Figure 1: Ratio between monthly values of the Group Sunspot Number (Rg) and the Wolf (Zürich, International) Sunspot Number.

Explaining those will go a long way to resolve the differences between the two series. We shall show that the 1945 discontinuity is a problem with the Wolf Number while the 1885 discontinuity is a problem with the Group Number. When both problems are corrected, there is no longer a significant difference between the two series.

The Waldmeier Discontinuity

Some time in the 1940s the observers in Zürich began to weight sunspots when counting them. The director of the Zürich Observatory, Max Waldmeier described [Waldmeier, 1968] the procedure thus “A spot like a fine point is counted as one spot; a larger spot, but still without penumbra, gets the statistical weight 2, a smallish spot with penumbra gets 3, and a larger one gets 5.” This weighting increases the spot count by 45% on average and, since the spot count is half of the Relative Number, the SSN by approximately half that.

The Locarno Station in Southern Switzerland has since 1957 served as an auxiliary observer for Zürich [as the weather on opposite sides of the Alps often is complimentary] and is still today the reference station for the modern sunspot number maintained by SIDC in Brussels, as all other observers are normalized to Locarno’s count. Locarno is still weighting the spots according to Waldmeier’s prescription, so the weighting carries over fully into the current sunspot number. Normalization is done by applying a factor, k, in the formula for the Relative Sunspot Number R = k (10 G + S) such that different observers of the number of groups, G, and the number of spots, S, arrive at the same relative number, R. The k-factor depends on several things: telescope aperture and magnification, observer acuity, atmospheric seeing, and the precise way spots are recognized and grouped. The Zürich observers after Wolf chose to count all spots that were visible, while Wolf did not include the smallest spots near the limit of detectability, in order to be compatible with Schwabe’s observations. Consequently, a k-factor of 0.6 was, at first, empirically determined and later simply adopted to reduce the sunspot number to the original Wolf scale.

Figure 2 shows the effect of weighting using a typical drawing from Locarno. There is also a small contribution from an improved classification of sunspot groups introduced at about the same time. The combined net effect is to increase the sunspot number since ~1945 by ~20%. This explains the discontinuity in the ratio GSN/SSN at that time. A strong check and confirmation of the effect of the weighting have been carried out the past year by the Locarno observers, counting both with and without weighting, so the magnitude of the effect of the weighting is now established and is no longer an open issue.

The effect of the weighting turns out to be almost independent of solar activity, so a simple corrective action would be to multiply all numbers before 1945 by 1.20. Figure 3 shows the result of the correction. Such ‘wholesale’ correction is not without precedent. In 1861 Wolf published his first long list of the SSN covering the years 1749-1860. Around 1875, Wolf increased all the numbers on the 1861 list before 1848 by 25%, based on measurements of ‘the magnetic needle’, which we’ll hear more about later in this paper.

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Figure 2: (Left) Part of a drawing made at Locarno, showing that the spot with penumbra designated 104 was counted three times (weight 3). (Right) Two spots with the same area on drawings from Mt. Wilson and counted with weight 1 by Wolfer, in each case as one group with one spot (Wolf’s notation: groups.spots = 1.1), as the group was the only group on the disk

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Figure 3: Removing the effect of weighting after 1945 removes the discontinuity in 1945. There remains the discrepancy around 1885.

The lower panel shows the corrected SSN (Rz) in blue and the GSN in pink. Note that the corrected SSN reaches about the same level in each century

Group Sunspot Number Calibration

Hoyt & Schatten [H&S] quickly found that the constant that converted a group count to a simulated Wolf Relative Number was not a constant at all, but varied with the observer, and was, in effect, a k-factor to be applied to the number of groups. A decision must be made as to which observer should have a k-factor of unity. H&S chose the ‘Helio-Photographic Results’ tabulations from Royal Greenwich Observatory [RGO] covering the years 1874-1975 as their ‘standard’ observer. Because Wolf and successor Alfred Wolfer observed from 1848 through 1928 with overlap 1876-1893, their combined observations can serve as a ‘backbone’ for the determination of k-factors for other observers overlapping with them before the RGO series begins. H&S determined that the ratio between k-factors for Wolf and Wolfer was 1.021, i.e. that both observers saw very nearly the same number of groups. And herein lies the problem.

Because of extensive travel and other duties, Wolf from the 1860s until his death in 1893 exclusively used a small, handheld telescope, while Wolfer used a larger 80mm Fraunhofer telescope similar to what Wolf used earlier. Both telescopes still exist (Figure 4) and are even in use today by Thomas Friedli in Belp, near Bern, continuing the Wolf tradition.

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Figure 4. (Left) the 80 mm Fraunhofer refractor used since 1855 by Wolf and successors. (Center) the same telescope in use today by Thomas Friedli (person at right). (Right) the 37 mm portable telescope used by Wolf since the mid 1860s.

Figure 5 shows that for the time of overlap between Wolf and Wolfer, Wolfer counted [as appropriate for the larger telescope] 1.653 times as many groups as Wolf, and not only 1.021 times as determined by H&S. This discrepancy is the main cause of the 1885 discontinuity in the GSN/SSN ratio. We can understand the reason why Wolf saw so few groups by considering that the small spots making up groups with Zürich classifications a and b (groups containing spots without penumbra) are usually not visible in Wolf’s small telescope. Such groups make up about a half of all groups.

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Figure 5: (Top) Number of groups observed by Wolfer compared to the number observed by Wolf. (Bottom) Applying the k-factor of 1.653 makes Wolf’s count (blue) match (yellow) Wolfer’s count (pink)

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Figure 6: Different colors (hard to see because they fall on top of each other) show the individual contributions to the composite (bright cyan). The black dashed curve is the Zürich SSN / 12 (to convert it to number of groups).

Using the Wolf-Wolfer composite record as a backbone, we can now confidently determine k-factors for 22 mutually overlapping observers stretching back to Schwabe and forward to Brunner and construct a composite series. As Figure 6 shows there is now no significant difference between the GSN and the SSN. So, with only two adjustments: ~20% for SSN before 1945 and ~50% for GSN before 1885, the discrepancy is resolved. The issue of the very early data, say before 1825, is still open and is the target for the next SSN Workshop, but if people can accept the current series without adjustments, then they might also accept that we, for now, assume that there are no further adjustments warranted for the early data.

Geomagnetic Calibration of Sunspot Numbers

Wolf [1852] discovered a beautiful connection between sunspots and the diurnal variation of the Earth’s magnetic field. He marvelled “Who would have thought just a few years ago about the possibility of computing a terrestrial phenomenon from observations of sunspots”, and he at once realized that such a relation could be used as an independent check on the calibration of the sunspot number. Today we understand the physics of that connection and can fully validate Wolf’s assertion. Solar Far Ultraviolet [FUV] radiation creates and maintains the conducting E-layer in the ionosphere. Thermal winds driven by solar heating move the charges across the Earth’s magnetic field setting up an ionospheric dynamo with currents generating magnetic effects observable on the ground. As the Earth rotates under the currents (which are fixed in direction to the Sun) a characteristic diurnal perturbation of the geomagnetic field is readily observed (discovered by Graham in 1722). The diurnal variation is best seen in the East component of the geomagnetic field. The 10.7 cm microwave flux from the Sun is a good proxy for the FUV flux and Figure 7 shows how well the amplitude of the diurnal variation tracks 10.7, thus validating Wolf’s procedure using modern data.

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Figure 7: 10.7 flux correlation with the range, rY, of the diurnal variation of East Component

The Figure also shows the ‘equivalent’ 10.7 flux calculated from the observed range (average of nine stations) of the diurnal variation for many solar cycles before the advent of the flux radiometers. It is clear that the well-understood physics of causes of the diurnal variation of the geomagnetic field provides a reliable way of assessing the past variation of solar flux, and hence the magnetic activity responsible for it; a variation for which the sunspot number is a proxy. Careful application of this method fully supports the two adjustments of the sunspot series described above based on the diurnal variation as observed since the 1780s.

Solar Wind Properties in the Past

Direct in-situ observation of the solar wind goes back 50 years and it was clear from even the earliest data that geomagnetic activity (separate from and superposed on the regular diurnal variation just discussed) was directly controlled by the expanding solar atmosphere – by the expansion speed and by the strength and direction of the magnetic field dragged out from the Sun. Recent research [Svalgaard & Cliver, 2005, 2007, 2010; Lockwood & Owens, 2011] has shown that it is possible to infer the solar wind speed and the magnetic field strength from suitable, newly defined, indices of geomagnetic activity that have been found to respond to different combinations of these solar wind parameters, allowing the influence of each to be separately extracted and calibrated by comparison with the space-based data measured near the Earth, effectively inverting the ‘response function’ of the Earth to the solar wind. Figure 8 shows one result of this inversion.

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Figure 8: Heliospheric magnetic field strength B at Earth inferred from the IDV geomagnetic index (blue) and observed by spacecraft (red). Data before 1872 (light blue) are preliminary and can be improved by adding more 19th observatory data.

Data exist to carry this inversion back to the earliest systematic observations of the geomagnetic field in the 1830s. We find that the reconstruction of the solar wind is consistent with the re-assessment of the sunspot number series described above, in particular that there also does not seem to have been a Modern Grand Maximum in solar wind parameters. Another finding of interest is that even during periods of extremely low solar activity [e.g. the years 1901-1902, 2008-2009] the solar wind is still present having a respectable magnetic field of about 4 nT. An important research issue at present is whether this minimum state of solar magnetic activity, a ‘floor’, is a general feature, at all times [Schrijver et al., 2010]. Recent work by Owens et al. [2012] suggests that “even a steady decline in sunspot number may result in a plateau in the Open Solar (magnetic) Flux”.

The Cosmic Ray Record

Cosmic ray particles reaching the Earth are mostly produced outside the solar system during supernova explosions. Two time-varying magnetic ‘shields’, the solar magnetic field and the geomagnetic field, modulate the cosmic ray flux. The weaker these fields, the higher is the cosmic ray intensity near the surface of the Earth. Ionization chambers and neutron monitors have directly monitored the intensity of cosmic radiation since the 1930s [Steinhilber et al., 2012]. Before that, no direct measurements exist, and cosmogenic radionuclides, are used as a proxy for cosmic radiation, especially 10Be and 14C, produced by cosmic rays colliding with atmospheric nitrogen and oxygen. Thus, the production rates of these nuclides are related to the flux of the incoming cosmic rays. As with the sunspot number, there are issues with the proper calibration of the cosmic ray proxies. What are measured are not variations of the production rate, but of the deposition rate, which in addition to the incoming flux also depend on atmospheric circulation and climate in general. Inversions of the ionization chamber data to extract the strength of the solar magnetic field are discordant with inversions of the neutron monitor data and with the result of the geomagnetic constructions. This issue will eventually be resolved and a special ISSI workshop towards this goal is ongoing [Svalgaard et al., 2011].

Of special interest is the cosmic ray record of so-called ‘Grand Minima’, like the Maunder Minimum. The solar magnetic field (expressed as the near-Earth solar wind magnetic field) extracted from the cosmic ray record falls to zero or at times is un-physically negative during Grand Minima (Figure 8) while at the same time a vigorous solar cycle modulation of the cosmic ray flux is observed [e.g. Berggren et al., 2009, Figure 9] indicating to this author that significant solar magnetic field was present.

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Figure 8 [left]: Heliospheric magnetic field strength at Earth inferred from the cosmic ray record [Steinhilber et al., 2010]. The deep excursions to zero or even un-physical negative values are not understood and may be artefacts caused by too aggressive extrapolation from modulation potential to field strength. This is presently an open and controversial issue.

Figure 9 [right]: (Top) 10Be flux from the NGRIP ice core (Greenland). (Bottom) The 10Be data band pass filtered at 8–16 years [Berggren et al., 2009]. The red curve is the filtered GSN series.

Similarly, observations of the spicule forest (the ‘red flash’) during the total solar eclipses in 1706 and 1715 seem to require the presence of bright network structures, and thus of substantial solar photospheric and chromospheric magnetism during at least the last decades of the Maunder Minimum [Foukal & Eddy, 2007].

The very long cosmic ray record (when calibrated and understood correctly) provides the necessary material for statistical studies of the frequency and features of extremes of solar activity (the ‘500-year floods’). The first order of business is to understand why the variations are discordant compared to other solar indicators the past 400 years. This effort is ongoing and the results are not yet in sight.

Predicting Solar Activity

At this point in time it has become of great practical and societal importance to predict solar activity and space climate, rather than just recording them, e.g. for planning mitigation of the effects of extreme solar events. The NASA/NOAA international Panel for Predicting the Solar Cycle examined 75 ‘predictions’ of the current Cycle 24, basically covering the full spectrum of possible outcomes centered on the climatological mean, from extremely small to extremely large [Pesnell, 2012]. The Panel ended up (barely) endorsing the ‘precursor’ methods as the most promising where some property of the Sun near minimum is used as a predictor of the following cycle.

On physical grounds, the magnitude of the polar fields of the Sun seems to be a good candidate as a precursor as it is thought that the polar fields act as a ‘seed’ for the dynamo producing the next cycle [e.g. Jiang et al., 2007]. Leading up to the minimum in 2008, the polar fields were the weakest ever observed (since the invention of reliable solar magnetographs in the 1950s) prompting Svalgaard et al. [2005] and Schatten [2005] to predict that cycle 24 would be ‘the smallest cycle in a hundred years’. This prediction has, so far, held up well, providing (together with predictions using other precursors, such as the geomagnetic aa-index) a successful test of the precursor notion. Figure 10 compares the polar fields and the size of the next cycle for the past several cycles.

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Figure 10a: The axial magnetic ‘dipole moment’ of the Sun, defined as the difference between the (signed) magnetic field strength near the North Pole and near the South Pole, for the past four solar cycles. To facilitate comparison of cycles, a ‘ghost’ mirror image is also plotted. Data from Mount Wilson Observatory (blue) has been scaled to match observations from Wilcox Solar Observatory (red).

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Figure 10b: The polar field variation at the left scaled by the maximum smoothed sunspot number for the next cycle suggesting the same variation for each cycle, i.e. that the cycle maximum is controlled by the polar fields at the preceding minimum. For Cycle 24, the maximum was not known, but a very high value (165) or a very low value (45) does not fit the pattern. A maximum size of 72 for Cycle 24 seems to be the just right ‘Goldilocks’ value.

Figure 11 shows how the prediction is doing. The quantity plotted is the total number of active regions per month on the disk within 70º of Central Meridian (which is on average 2.25 times the sunspot number).

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Figure 11: Numbered active regions within 70º of CM per month. Different cycles are plotted with different colors. The predicted Cycle 24 is shown as the dashed purple curve. We are very close to a drawn out solar maximum at this time of writing.

Recent Changes in the Sun?

Historically all solar indices have been closely correlated as they all derive from the same source: the variable magnetic field. In fact, the various reconstructions of past (and predictions of future) activity all rely on the implicit assumption that the correlations stay the same over time. This is likely to be true for indices that have a close physical connection, like the 10.7 and UV fluxes, but is not given a priori for correlations that are more indirect, e.g involving the sunspot number: the processes creating visible sunspots are varied and not fully understood. And indeed, while there has long been a stable relationship between the 10.7 flux and the sunspot number, allowing one to calculate or map one from the other, that relationship has steadily deteriorated in the past decade to the point where the sunspot number for a given flux has decreased by about a third (Figure 12).

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Figure 12: The observed SSN divided by a synthetic SSN computed from a polynomial fit to the 10.7 flux over the interval 1951-1990. Red points are SIDC sunspot numbers while blue points are SWPC (NOAA) sunspot numbers scaled down by the their average k-factor of 0.655. Only years when the SSN was above 10 are included. Since ~1990 the observed SSN is progressively lower for a given 10.7 flux.

A similar decrease of the sunspot number for a given amount of magnetic flux in the plages surrounding active regions has occurred as well as a decrease of the number of spots per active region. This is unprecedented in the observational record. We interpret this decrease as a loss of primarily the small spots [Lefevre & Clette, 2012].

Observations by Livingston & Penn since 1998 until the present show that the average magnetic field in sunspots has steadily decreased by 25% [Livingston et al., 2012], regardless of the fact that we are now again at the maximum of a solar cycle, so there has not been a solar-cycle-related reversal of the trend. Since their magnetic fields cool sunspots, a decreasing field means that sunspots are getting warmer and that their contrast with the surrounding photosphere is getting smaller, making the spots harder to see. There is a minimum field strength in visible spots of about 1500 Gauss [0.15 T] and as that 1500 G threshold is approached, magnetic fields appear at the solar surface which do not seem to form dark sunspots or pores. Owens et al. [2012] suggest that the photospheric flux emergence in such cases may take place in flux tubes with field too weak, or of too small a diameter, to form sunspots, citing Spruit [1977]. The observed distribution of number of spots vs. field strength has been shifting steadily towards that limit. If, and that is a big IF, this trend continues, the number of visible spots in the next cycle [and perhaps beyond] may fall to values not seen since the Maunder Minimum, but without dramatic changes in the emerging magnetic flux. Without the dark spots, Total Solar Irradiance might even be a bit higher. It is not clear what this will mean for the impact of solar activity on the Earth’s environment, if any, but it portends exciting times for solar physicists.

Discussion

Our technological civilization has reached a point where solar activity and its prediction on all times scales have become significant factors in maintaining and safekeeping of the technological infrastructure, both on the ground and in space. New capabilities, in instrumentation, deployment, computer storage and power, and – last, but not least – increased awareness promise progress towards predictive improvements. On the other hand, if the Sun is moving into a new regime of lower activity, a period of uncertainty may make life hard for the forecaster. The possible, recent re-assessment of past solar activity should provide a better benchmark for theoretical modelling to meet. If the discrepancy between the sunspot number and other solar indices continues, it may be that the SSN, for a while, is no longer a good measure of solar activity and forecasters (and users) may be forced to rely on other indices for operational use. This does not mean that we should stop deriving the sunspot number from the usual visual observations; on the contrary, the evolution of the SSN must be followed closely in order to provide a continuing basis for assessing the historical record.

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Acknowledgements

The author thanks Ed Cliver for serving as a long-suffering sounding board for my wilder ideas. I also thank Phil Scherrer at Stanford for support and I have benefited from participation in the International Teams in Space Science [ISSI] Workshop on ‘Long-term reconstruction of Solar and Solar Wind Parameters’ and from the Sunspot Number Workshops http://ssnworkshop.wikia.com/wiki/Home

This paper was a keynote presentation at the ”TIEMS, Oslo Conference on Space Weather, 2012″

207 thoughts on “Solar Activity – Past, Present, Future

  1. Please keep in mind, that the quantity of incoming galactic cosmic rays is probably not constant. Indeed, there is mounting evidence that the level is dependent upon the central black hole’s feeding schedule: http://arxiv.org/abs/1101.5192
    When the galactic center gets an influx of matter, the polar streams impact the galaxy’s halo producing GCRs. Sifting out this effect on incoming GCRs from solar activity levels will be challenging, or get ignored.

  2. I echo my thanks to Dr. Svalgaard.
    The Sun seems to be moving into a new regime of lower activity, to any rational person this represent a cooling solar system. What does the science is settled crowd think.

  3. Thanks indeed Leif, for such a succinct, coherent and clear summary of the state of the art in solar physics. I have learnt more in the last hour by reading your essay than in the past month reading just about anything else. Scientific curiosity temporarily satiated!
    Best regards,
    Larry Kirk

  4. Thank You Dr. Svalgaard for a straight forward assessment regarding the scientific (historical to present) evaluation of solar “weather”. It appears that we know much and simultaneously little. I appreciate your hard work.

  5. David Archibalds article

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/11/10/is-there-is-a-planetary-influence-on-solar-activity-it-seems-so-according-to-this-new-paper/#more-74052

    relates solar cycles to planetary gravitational force, when this force should be combined with planetary magnetism, both forces that work on the square of the distance. Then according to

    http://lasp.colorado.edu/!bagenal/3750/ClassNotes/Class13/Class13.html

    the Magnetic field for Jupiter is 20,000 times, and Saturn is 600 times Earth’s magnetosphere. These varying magnetic fields would effect solar particle bombardments as well as cosmic sources. Varying protection from varying particle bombaardments would cause varying rates of Earth fission….and varying internal heat and varying elemental atom/molecule production. These are climate forcing factors far outside the Carbon paradigm.

  6. Hoyt & Schatten called this index the Group Sunspot Number [GSN] and found that it appears that solar activity has steadily increased since 1700 to what might be called a Modern Grand Maximum in the latter part of the 20th century.

    Hmmmmn. And what was increasing during that same time period?

  7. Leif says:
    “Without the dark spots, Total Solar Irradiance might even be a bit higher.”

    That is followed by —

    DaveG says:
    November 11, 2012 at 7:52 pm
    “ . . . this represent a cooling solar system.

    ———————
    So, it is all perfectly clear then!

  8. Thanks, Leif. The work that you have reported is most welcome here. I appreciate the effort that you have put into it.

  9. As Leif mentions “Reassessment of the sunspot series (no Modern Grand Maximum) . . .”

    That is followed by —

    RACookPE1978 says:
    November 11, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Who quotes a paper saying just the opposite.
    ———-
    As to “And what was increasing during that same time period?

    In the US, at least, entitlements and unfunded pensions.

  10. John F. Hultquist says:
    November 11, 2012 at 8:55 pm

    As Leif mentions “Reassessment of the sunspot series (no Modern Grand Maximum) . . .”

    That is followed by …

    RACookPE1978 says:
    November 11, 2012 at 8:45 pm

    Hoyt & Schatten called this index the Group Sunspot Number [GSN] and found that it appears that solar activity has steadily increased since 1700 to what might be called a Modern Grand Maximum in the latter part of the 20th century.

    Please, let me point out that I was quoting from Lief’s words in his paper, in the thread that we are reading above. That is, it is the Group Sunspot Number that had been increasing since its low point during the Little Ice Age, but which is no longer increasing … And, it is “global temperatures” which have been increasing since that same little Ice Age, are no longer increasing.

    Why? I don’t know. But we must remember to “count” the right number when trying to look for any relationship.

    If some link does exist between some visible solar symptoms and the earth’s atmosphere, then Lief’s plot above confirms that can be correctly investigated ONLY by analyzing the yearly/monthly Group Sunspot Number, not any individual or total sunspot numbers nor any combination of the two.

  11. Most appreciated and comforting to see that solar physicists are still acting as scientists and not shills for some ideology. Your cogent and informative article is most appreciated by us non physicists. I didn’t know anyone used Gauss any more. This one need a couple of more reads to fully appreciate its depth.

  12. And, while TSI may be higher in a Maunder Min solar situation many of the solar outputs that occur and react with the earth’s atmospheric-tropospheric stratospheric layers in various reactions with ozone, etc, etc are likely to decrease leading to differing climatic temperature changes most likely imo for cooling( as per previous Maunder Minimum in many areas). Plus extra cooling due to Cosmic ray low cloud increase cooling.

  13. RACookPE1978 says:
    November 11, 2012 at 9:09 pm
    That is, it is the Group Sunspot Number that had been increasing since its low point during the Little Ice Age,
    The point was that the Group sunspot number is flawed and must be abandoned. The hard work by Hoyt and Schatten has not beem in vain because the data they dug up will be incorporated in the revised sunspot number, just calibrated correctly.

  14. Leif your detective work here is just stellar. I also appreciate the humility and care you show when you clearly lay out what is known and where the controversy still exists.
    And all this time I thought Sunspots were settled science.hehe. What a refreshing read this was.
    I also like the way you untangled the mistaken adjustments made in the past and the failure to adjust for a change in instrument ( telescope size) Sometimes raw data aint its all cracked up to be.

  15. Faux Science Slayer says:
    November 11, 2012 at 8:40 pm
    when this force should be combined with planetary magnetism, both forces that work on the square of the distance.
    Actually not, the magnetic field falls off with the cube of the distance. Now, because the solar wind is a plasma and drags the magnetic field with it, the magnetic field far from the Sun falls off linearly with distance. For planets that do not emit ‘solar wind’ the magnetic field falls of as the cube, so gets small real quick.

  16. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 11, 2012 at 10:02 pm

    The point was that the Group sunspot number is flawed and must be abandoned.

    Care should be applied here. The GSN values are questioned by some but their argument have holes that have yet not been answered.

    Leif is claiming the pre Wolfer GSN records are wrong because H&S did not correctly apply the correct k factor to Wolf who counted less groups. Schatten seems to have had a memory loss on the method used but there are two k factor columns against each observer that are not explained.

    Of more importance is that H&S were 100% aware of the Wolf and Wolfer method of counting groups as can be seen in the data notes associated with Wolf’s BIBLIOGRAPHY notes that form the base data of the GSN.

    Comments:
    1. Johann Rudolf Wolf (1816-1893).
    2. Wolf was a poor observer, missing smaller groups. On
    hazy days his group counts would drop markedly.
    Nonetheless, he is the primary observer used by Wolf
    for 1848-1893.

    Leif is in the business of ironing the record flat, agenda driven science should be accepted for what it is and more heavily scrutinized. My own opinion on the pre 1840 sunspot numbers is that the Zurich values need to be re evaluated as they have a heavy geomagnetic component (proxy records) that have more inconsistencies than the older sunspot recordings. The Zurich numbers may well be the data series that need to adjusted down before 1840, as Wolfer showed for SC5 once more data became available.

  17. “new reconstructions of Total Solar Irradiance also contribute to our improved knowledge (or at least best guess) of the environment of the Earth System, with obvious implications for management of space-based technological assets or, perhaps, even climate.”

    Well since Leif is endeavouring to fit the sunspot and TSI data to the carbon agenda by ironing it as flat as possible, I guess we all know what the subtext of this passage means.

    “A strong check and confirmation of the effect of the weighting have been carried out the past year by the Locarno observers, counting both with and without weighting, so the magnitude of the effect of the weighting is now established and is no longer an open issue.”

    Attempting a calibration and imposing it on long term historical sunspot records at a time when the sunspot count is anomalously diverging from other solar metrics such as the f10.7 flux is not a valid procedure IMO.

  18. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 11, 2012 at 10:02 pm
    RACookPE1978 says:
    November 11, 2012 at 9:09 pm
    That is, it is the Group Sunspot Number that had been increasing since its low point during the Little Ice Age,
    The point was that the Group sunspot number is flawed and must be abandoned. The hard work by Hoyt and Schatten has not beem in vain because the data they dug up will be incorporated in the revised sunspot number, just calibrated correctly.

    Since we don’t know much about how the Sun operates over long timescales, it would seem prudent to continue to monitor all of the longer datasets and update them. If we are seeing less groups but more spots, that in itself may be important, we don’t know. To “abandon” metrics maintained over centuries because they don’t fit the agenda is a dereliction of scientific duty.

    I agree we should endeavour to ‘calibrate correctly’. ‘Adjusting’ dispararate metrics so they ‘all sing off the same hymn sheet’ may not be the way to do that however. The Sun is still mysterious and since Leif has just abandoned 50 years of deep dynamo theory (Which he previously assured us was “well grounded in solid physics”) in favour of a ‘shallow dynamo’ hypothesis, we should treasure our historical records and not allow them to be manipulated by someone who has strong opinions on the ‘correct’ theory.

    James Hansen and NASA GIStemp springs to mind.

    Metrics should be maintained and calibrated by impartial bodies whose principle remit is the custodianship of data, not its application. Allowing the definition and calibration of the metrics to be in the same hands as those writing new theory is a recipe for bias. We should not repeat the mistakes of the past so quickly.

  19. Ah,I was working on stellar evolutionary processes using two large external rings and a smaller intersecting ring long before they were physically observed in May 1994,I even have a copyright in 1990 on the thing yet there isn’t a researcher alive I would care to share the work with –

    Most of what I see here is frantic,cobbled together references mixed with empirical voodoo to make it appear something is being said but that is always the way it has been where astronomy and terrestrial sciences meet.The great innovator was Copernicus who streamlined contrived scenarios for solar system structure and planetary motion by introducing more than one motion of the Earth to explain appearances and experiences on a terrestrial level and the same thing is needed today.

    None of you discuss ‘climate change’ properly as planetary climate has yet to be defined correctly so all that is left is the problem modeling causes and Copernicus himself had something to say about modeling from a poor foundation of understanding –

    “They are just like someone including in a picture hands, feet, head, and other limbs from
    different places, well painted indeed, but not modeled from the same body, and not in the least matching each other, so that a monster would be produced from them rather than a man. Thus in the process of their demonstrations, which they call their system, they are found either to have missed out something essential, or to have brought in something inappropriate and wholly irrelevant, which would not have happened to them if they had followed proper principles. For if the hypotheses which they assumed had not been fallacies, everything which follows from them could be independently verified.” De revolutionibus, 1543 Copernicus

    It is difficult to find individuals who think independently,not as commentators but as innovators who are not out to please an audience or look for acceptance but one who can get out of the rut of modeling and look at what is in front of them as though they had no agenda to pursue.

  20. Reblogged this on Tallbloke's Talkshop and commented:
    tallbloke says:
    November 12, 2012 at 12:13 am
    “new reconstructions of Total Solar Irradiance also contribute to our improved knowledge (or at least best guess) of the environment of the Earth System, with obvious implications for management of space-based technological assets or, perhaps, even climate.”

    Well since Leif is endeavouring to fit the sunspot and TSI data to the carbon agenda by ironing it as flat as possible, I guess we all know what the subtext of this passage means.

    “A strong check and confirmation of the effect of the weighting have been carried out the past year by the Locarno observers, counting both with and without weighting, so the magnitude of the effect of the weighting is now established and is no longer an open issue.”

    Attempting a calibration and imposing it on long term historical sunspot records at a time when the sunspot count is anomalously diverging from other solar metrics such as the f10.7 flux is not a valid procedure IMO.

    tallbloke says:
    November 12, 2012 at 12:33 am
    Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 11, 2012 at 10:02 pm
    RACookPE1978 says:
    November 11, 2012 at 9:09 pm
    That is, it is the Group Sunspot Number that had been increasing since its low point during the Little Ice Age,
    The point was that the Group sunspot number is flawed and must be abandoned. The hard work by Hoyt and Schatten has not beem in vain because the data they dug up will be incorporated in the revised sunspot number, just calibrated correctly.

    Since we don’t know much about how the Sun operates over long timescales, it would seem prudent to continue to monitor all of the longer datasets and update them. If we are seeing less groups but more spots, that in itself may be important, we don’t know. To “abandon” metrics maintained over centuries because they don’t fit the agenda is a dereliction of scientific duty.

    I agree we should endeavour to ‘calibrate correctly’. ‘Adjusting’ dispararate metrics so they ‘all sing off the same hymn sheet’ may not be the way to do that however. The Sun is still mysterious and since Leif has just abandoned 50 years of deep dynamo theory (Which he previously assured us was “well grounded in solid physics”) in favour of a ‘shallow dynamo’ hypothesis, we should treasure our historical records and not allow them to be manipulated by someone who has strong opinions on the ‘correct’ theory.

    James Hansen and NASA GIStemp springs to mind.

    Metrics should be maintained and calibrated by impartial bodies whose principle remit is the custodianship of data, not its application. Allowing the definition and calibration of the metrics to be in the same hands as those writing new theory is a recipe for bias. We should not repeat the mistakes of the past so quickly.

  21. I wasn’t expecting to read this article right through, first time, but I did – it’s compelling, comprehensive, and easy to understand. Pure science and analysis at its best. I’d say it represents a Grand Information Maximum on solar activity for the blogosphere.

    Thanks Dr. Svalgaard – I let my tea get cold while reading it.

  22. Fascinating, Dr Svalgaard, big respect. Although I could follow much there were one or two places where I felt like little boy allowed to stay up late & listren to a grown-ups conversation!!!! However, I note no specific conclusions seem to have been drawn as to the outcome of such observations, but the late breat British scientist Frederick William Hershel did observe that the greater the sunspot activity, the lower the price of corn, & the lower the sunspot activity, the higher the price of corn, he apparently won bets on it too! I know it’s not terribly scientific, but just saying. :-)

  23. It is posts like this that bring me back to WUWT as part of my daily reading. Thank you Anthony for the forum and thanks as well to Dr Svalgaard for the fine article.

  24. “A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.” Winston Churchill

  25. Geoff Sharp says:
    November 11, 2012 at 11:41 pm
    Care should be applied here. The GSN values are questioned by some but their arguments have holes that have yet not been answered.

    Absolutely. Looking at the responses here, Leif has done a masterful job of pulling the wool over their eyes. Maybe they should look at what Leif’s homogenisation efforts imply and think about what it means for climate science.

    Flatter Sun = Flatter Earth stuck in the co2 dark ages.

  26. genezeien says:
    November 11, 2012 at 7:52 pm

    Please keep in mind, that the quantity of incoming galactic cosmic rays is probably not constant. Indeed, there is mounting evidence that the level is dependent upon the central black hole’s feeding schedule: http://arxiv.org/abs/1101.5192
    When the galactic center gets an influx of matter, the polar streams impact the galaxy’s halo producing GCRs. Sifting out this effect on incoming GCRs from solar activity levels will be challenging, or get ignored.
    ——————————————————————————————————————

    Then, too, as Shaviv, et al. propose, this variable flux may well be further modulated by the position of the solar system:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/12144433

  27. I like it, “Listening in on grown-ups conversation.” Thank you Dr. Svalgaard and thank you Anthony Watts. I read the essay closely and will re-read it.

  28. Geoff Sharp says:
    November 11, 2012 at 11:58 pm
    The L&P methodology and results are now being questioned by (science.) errr………….I mean an IT consultant!

    There that is more accurate.

    Geof Sharp and Tallbloke are agenda driven activists who are just the other end of the alarmist line.

    Tallbloke leaps onto any old crackpot theory, (Hans Jelbring anyone!) even if it is in conflict with the Laws of Physics, just so long as it fits in with his agenda.

    Thanks to Dr Svalgaard for a succinct summary of where Solar Science is at the moment.

    Alan

  29. Firstly , thanks to Leif for a detailed explanation of the thinking behind the proposed changes. This makes it all a lot clearer. It is a shame that the graphs are all but illegible at that size.

    re differences in group counting:
    “Applying the k-factor of 1.653 makes Wolf’s count (blue) match (yellow) Wolfer’s count (pink)”

    ” So, with only two adjustments: ~20% for SSN before 1945 and ~50% for GSN before 1885, the discrepancy is resolved. ”

    R = k (10 G + S)

    Since G is [or rather was] about S/10 the original formula makes G and S about equal in weight as noted in the article.

    So having found an empirical “k-factor” in the GROUP counting of the two observers, this seems to have morphed into the overall k-factor in the above equation. Thus doubling the effect of the “correction” by applying it to both G and S.

    Maybe this was not clearly explained but there are two use of “k-factor” here . This needs clarifying.

  30. tallbloke says:
    November 12, 2012 at 12:13 am

    Well since Leif is endeavouring to fit the sunspot and TSI data to the carbon agenda by ironing it as flat as possible, ….”

    Nonsense. Flat TSI/sunspot data does not help the AGW argument. There was strong warming in the early 20th century which cannot have been caused by increases in atmospheric CO2. The ‘warmists’ need variable solar activity to explain all the forcings which caused that warming. Since the obsolete TSI reconstructions show an increase in output in the early 20th century which flattens from about 1960 onwards they are just as keen on the old reconstructions as you are. I seem to recall Bob Tisdale, some time ago, did a post on this very issue. In it he criticised the IPCC for relying on obsolete data.

    But do carry on playing into their hands. You now appear to be backed into a corner. We have lower activity and NO cooling – and, please, don’t bring up the lag issue. We’ve seen a couple of posts recently which strongly suggest that the cooling during (or actually BEFORE) the Dalton Minimum was caused by the weak Dalton cycles. Ditto – the Maunder.

  31. Whenever I fight my corner in defence of ‘denier’ blogs, I always ask people to read the comments as therein lays, mostly, the truth in an argument. As a non-scientist, I am not always able to see the wood for the trees when reading the main post and rely totally on the comments to see a balanced view.
    This article is a case in point. As I was reading it I was finding it hard to see which side of the debate it was supporting; the comments now make me realise how easy it is to get blind-sided as a layman.
    I’ll await the author’s defence in the face of the critiques

  32. Leif, where can I download the time series data for the reconstructed sunspot numbers after all the corrections, and also the axial magnetic ‘dipole moment’ of the Sun as in fig 10a please?
    Yes, I want to do cycles analysis on them. :-)

  33. tallbloke says:
    >>
    Absolutely. Looking at the responses here, Leif has done a masterful job of pulling the wool over their eyes. Maybe they should look at what Leif’s homogenisation efforts imply and think about what it means for climate science.

    Flatter Sun = Flatter Earth stuck in the co2 dark ages.
    >>

    having criticised Leif for trying to apply agenda based adjustments, you invoke your own agenda in opposition.

    I would be more convinced by criticisms of his methods than being told we have been conned because of what it “means”.

    Leif’s manipulations should be judged on their method, not on what they may mean for climate science.

    I think that TSI is being given undue weight anyway in as far as it is being used to say “it’s not the Sun”. Recent work looking at different parts of the spectrum showed very strong UV even when TSI was low , IIRC.

    Ocean penetrating UV is likely to be a more significant factor in affects on climate than TSI. Also its ionisation effects mean it will have far more influence on cloud and other atmospheric factors.

    Interesting to compare Leif’s figure 7 and * above with the Gomez Dome Antarctic temp d18O proxy by Thomson et al.

  34. Here is a comparison of normal GSN and Leif’s corrected SSN

    The long term effect is roughly a doubling of the historic amplitudes.

  35. What I read here is – there was a problem before and this is my/our way of fixing it.

    That is fine, as far as it goes, but in today’s science by press release there is always the agenda, especially when it comes to “fixing” previous data.

    I enjoyed reading the paper and learned from it, but, as always on WUWT, the comments are always as enlightening, especially after you get to know the players.

  36. tallbloke says:
    November 12, 2012 at 1:58 am

    Absolutely. Looking at the responses here, Leif has done a masterful job of pulling the wool over their eyes.

    Pretty sad really, but I think we need to realize this is far from a science blog.

  37. Tallbloke,

    We should treasure our historical records and not allow them to be manipulated by someone who has strong opinions on the ‘correct’ theory.

    Leif,

    This discrepancy is the main cause of the 1885 discontinuity in the GSN/SSN ratio. We can understand the reason why Wolf saw so few groups by considering that the small spots making up groups with Zürich classifications a and b (groups containing spots without penumbra) are usually not visible in Wolf’s SMALL telescope. Such groups make up about a half of all groups.
    ———————————————————————————————————————

    Sunspots are just an indication of the suns activity, if past observers missed a few spots, so what, the main body of the observations indicate less spots mean colder.

    Perhaps we should go back to the Maunda min.

    This is a similar telescope used in the Maunder.

    Gassendi 1592 – 1655.

    It indicates that the probability of failing to observe sunspots during the years 1676 – 1700 is SMALL.

    http://www.springerlink.com/content/g621x2918n7l05q6/fulltext.pdf

    John Flammsteed a very eminent English astronomer,

    http://words.fromoldbooks.org/Chalmers-Biography/f/flamsteed-john.html

  38. Alan Millar says:
    November 12, 2012 at 3:15 am

    The L&P methodology and results are now being questioned by (science.) errr………….I mean an IT consultant!

    There that is more accurate.

    Perhaps if you had half a brain and actually read the link provided you would acknowledge that many respected scientists along with this layman have real data that challenges the so called L&P theory.

  39. tallbloke says: November 12, 2012 at 1:58 am
    Absolutely. Looking at the responses here, Leif has done a masterful job of pulling the wool over their eyes. Maybe they should look at what Leif’s homogenisation efforts imply and think about what it means for climate science.

    What evidence is there for your proposition that the 2 earlier series are more correct that Leif’s?
    Temperatures in the 2 hemisperes vary on a yearly basis due to different insolation. Any lowering of the sunspot count (TSI) over the last 8 or so years would have manifested itself in air temperature variations. BUT TSI down and yet temp is still up. Seems you may have a problem explaining that!

    Flatter Sun = Flatter Earth stuck in the co2 dark ages.

  40. I will suggest that readers consider the fact that Sharp and Tallbloke are the first to play the
    the “agenda” card. Dr. S must have an agenda. They dont explain what is wrong with his approach. they dont argue the facts they attack the man.

    You can all see the discontinuity in the ratio between the two series.
    You either explain that or reconcile it.
    You all see the two changes
    1. A change in instrument
    2. A change in weighting spots.

    The way I see it, Leif is doing the same kind of work on the Sun spot record that Anthony does on the land record. Will we end up with a sun spot record that is a bit flatter? fine whatever, the point is to focus on the facts and not the man. Will we end up with a land record that is a bit flatter?
    Fine. whatever. Focus on the facts not the man.

  41. Steven Mosher says:
    November 12, 2012 at 4:49 am

    I will suggest that readers consider the fact that Sharp and Tallbloke are the first to play the
    the “agenda” card. Dr. S must have an agenda.

    I would suggest that the Mosher/Svalgaard alliance says it all?

  42. “Absolutely. Looking at the responses here, Leif has done a masterful job of pulling the wool over their eyes. Maybe they should look at what Leif’s homogenisation efforts imply and think about what it means for climate science. ”

    Really? I look at his efforts and I ask if it makes sense?
    1. Looking at the data I see a ratio that should be centered around one that has two
    discontinuities.
    2. Looking at the first discontinuity we see a 20% inflation. We can even trace that back
    to documents. we can actually see the original homogenization was wrong.
    3. Looking at the second discontinuity we can trace that back to an instrument change. Here
    too we can see that failing to take account of the instrument change ( like changing to MMTS
    in the temperature record) is a fatal flaw.

    When the faulty adjustments are corrected we get a ratio without discontinuity. And, bonus here, we can see how other independent lines of evidence fall into line.

    So, we can look for ourselves tallbloke. As much as you might want us to look at the man, to cynically think he has an agenda ( Much the same way Mann tried to smear McIntyre), we can actually look at the work. You know, the scientific approach.

    What does it mean for AGW science? Nothing in these changes has any bearing on the fact that C02 causes warming. It might make some things harder to explain. it opens the door to look at things other than TSI. It might upset some apple carts on the AGW side and its shameful of you to suggest otherwise, to engage in the Mannian tactics of motive hunting, and to suggest that reafers here do likewise

  43. Ray Tomes says:
    November 12, 2012 at 3:28 am
    Leif, where can I download
    To play with:

    http://www.leif.org/research/TSI-SSN-Guess.xls

    http://www.leif.org/research/Solar-DM.xls

    ColdOldMan says:
    November 12, 2012 at 3:27 am
    I’ll await the author’s defence in the face of the critiques
    No valid critique has been put forward. The article is a progress report on ongoing work. There are two issues:
    1) weighting of Zurich/International SSN. This is now established fact
    2) calibration of GSN. Anybody can duplicate the analysis using published data.

    The actual talk at the conference [with notes] is here

    http://www.leif.org/research/Solar-Activity-Past-Present-and-Future-Notes.pdf

  44. ColdOldMAN

    You are not strictly looking at the efforts of scientists but rather empirical modelers and they constitute a specific bunch of people who have their roots in the late 17th century when modeling really took off with Isaac Newton when ‘predictive’ approaches obscured the interpretative side of science and unfortunately we are now seeing the worst realization of this empirical agenda,not climate models for and against global warming but actual modeling itself.

    It is the oldest trick in the book that you load dealings with climate, or any other complex topic for that matter,with as much technical jargon as possible,it doesn’t have to be real,it just has to put the reader at a disadvantage in assuming the assertions are honest,genuine and not pulled out of thin air – the old commies understood this principle well enough but people like Newton and his followers were the real culprits in starting this type of thing in projecting self-authority under the guise of intellectual superiority.The followers of Newton never understood the nuts and bolts of what he was actually doing with astronomical methods and insights,it only mattered to them that he pointed in the direction of modeling through the clockwork based Ra/Dec system to make it appear that the behavior of objects at a human level and orbits of planets on a solar system scale are one and the same.

    What you are seeing is a perfect storm of historical and technical details coming together to create this unsightly mess yet the surprising thing is how easy it is to remove yourself and look at climate outside bandwagon ideologies driven by models and graphs.It is possible to talk like a normal human being and work out exactly what went wrong,what is right in order to correct the mistakes we inherit and create a stable narrative for global climate and its links to astronomical inputs.

  45. Thank you very much Dr Svalgaard for this most informative paper. It was refreshingly full of “we don’t know yet” commentary, as opposed to the AGW crowd, which already knows exactly what will happen 200 years in the future.

    Question for you. For several years, you have stated that you thought cycle 24 was more similar to the cycles in the early 20th century. Lately you have seemed to hedge a bit on that point, and have ever so slowly begun to mention the words Maunder Minimim (Grand Minimum). Have you in fact moved any in your views with regard to that point, and if so, what have you seen that has caused that slight change in position? Thanks in advance.

  46. P. Solar says:
    November 12, 2012 at 3:24 am
    Maybe this was not clearly explained but there are two use of “k-factor” here .
    Yes, there is a k-factor for Groups in the GSN comparing two observers and a k-factor for the sunspot number. These two are different. The talk makes that clearer.

  47. Ok, I read the whole post. (doesn’t mean understood it all !!!)
    With the different counts between Wolfer and Wolf based on telescope technology, how to we compare modern sunspot counting with older counts with the difference between telescope technology?

  48. Interesting that I have posted 5 comments over 2 hours that are not moderated, whereas Mosher has had 2 comments approved. I have not included the forsaken Landshei.. tag that would put my comments in the sin bin, so I am wondering if Mosher has special treatment here?

  49. Steven Mosher says:
    November 12, 2012 at 4:49 am

    I will suggest that readers consider the fact that Sharp and Tallbloke are the first to play the
    the “agenda” card. Dr. S must have an agenda. They dont explain what is wrong with his approach.

    Actually, I did explain, but you’ve ignored that bit, because it doesn’t fit your smearing narrative.

  50. Steven Mosher says:
    November 12, 2012 at 4:49 am

    I don’t need you to tell me what to think either, Mosher. You are not helping. I can read, thank you very much.

  51. John Finn says:
    November 12, 2012 at 3:24 am
    Since the obsolete TSI reconstructions show an increase in output in the early 20th century which flattens from about 1960 onwards they are just as keen on the old reconstructions as you are.

    If you handle the SIDC data correctly, there is no problem demonstrating the solar influence on ocean heat content built up over decades of higher than average activity showing an increase in OHC all the way to 2003 despite the slightly falling peak amplitudes of the cycles after 1960. Here’s one option, which includes a co2 non-feedback estimate. Others are possible.

  52. Tucker says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:41 am
    Have you in fact moved any in your views with regard to that point, and if so, what have you seen that has caused that slight change in position?
    A mark of a good scientist is the ability to change when data demands it. That said, cycle 24 still looks much like cycle 14. The Maunder issue has to do with cycle 25 onwards.

  53. Matthew W says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:45 am
    how to we compare modern sunspot counting with older counts with the difference between telescope technology?
    We still have the old telescopes [Figure 4] and can [and do] check that the modern count is in line with the old. We also have the reaction of the Earth’s magnetic field to solar activity [Figures 7 and 8] and can check the level of sunspots now and then to see if we have the correct calibration.

  54. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 6:16 am
    A mark of a good scientist is the ability to change when data demands it. That said, cycle 24 still looks much like cycle 14. The Maunder issue has to do with cycle 25 onwards.

    So would you say that using your precursor methodology (polar field strength), you see a potentially low cycle 25 on the order of SSN 25-40 for max?? Lower?? Or is something else in the data piquing your curiousity?

  55. John Finn at 3:24am
    In your response to Tallbloke you say . . .
    “We have lower activity and NO cooling – and, please, don’t bring up the lag issue. We’ve seen a couple of posts recently which strongly suggest that the cooling during (or actually BEFORE) the Dalton Minimum was caused by the weak Dalton cycles. Ditto – the Maunder.”
    Would you kindly reconsider that statement? I don’t think it’s a logical argument. You’re assuming that a given external forcing will always met by a similar response. It takes no account of the condition of the ‘receiver’ at the time. When Tyson swung a punch and the opponent stood still, they got knocked out. When they rolled with it, it was a glancing blow. If the opponent was about dead on his feet, a little tap would finish them off.

  56. Geoff Sharp says: “The L&P methodology and results are now being questioned by science.”

    Of course, and as it should be. However, may I point out a few things. First, the original L&P paper was rejected, and never published as a peer reviewed paper. It was finally published as an on line document. We can speculate as to why it was originally “suppressed”.

    However, the L&P methodology includes, as any good methodology does, predicitons as to what will happen in the future. So by the mid 2020’s we will know whether sunspots have, in fact, “disappeared”. I believe L&P have forecast a maximum smoothed sun spot number for SC 25 of 7. This we will also be able to check.

    I am sure any objections to the L&P methodology are motivated by the need on the part of The Team in support of The Cause, to suggest that a new Maunder type solar magneitc minimum is not going to come, so that it becomes more difficult to suggest that global temperatures are going to fall in the near future. After all, The Team wants to keep the money gravy train running for a few more years. Here again, if we wait for a few more years, we will know whether global temperatures are going to start falling.

  57. Oh! Thank heavens this was a keynote address, according to the end of the post. I thought Leif had gone off his scientific writer’s rocker! Never have I read such colorful commentary, (IE “delicate”, “vulnerable”, “famous”, “hope”, etc) penned by the master of logic in any of his papers.

    I so enjoy reading his dry, dry, logic; sans adjectives, that characterizes his research papers, and have learned so much from them. Yet, I understand the need to be somewhat more colorful when giving keynote addresses. Still, I had to have another cup of Irish coffee this morning to get over the shock of seeing those words in print! Makes me wonder if he has frosted flakes for breakfast! No, no, no. I couldn’t take that.

  58. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:44 am
    >>
    P. Solar says:
    November 12, 2012 at 3:24 am
    Maybe this was not clearly explained but there are two use of “k-factor” here .
    Yes, there is a k-factor for Groups in the GSN comparing two observers and a k-factor for the sunspot number. These two are different. The talk makes that clearer.
    >>

    So there is a new forumla:
    R= k1*G+k2*S

    k1= 1.5; k2=1.02 , or something like. Is that it ?

    or
    R= k2*(k1*G+S )

    Since you have clearly gone to some effort to make this readily understandable , it would be good to have this stated explicitly somewhere.

  59. For all the whiners:
    You can yourself make the comparison Wolf-Wolfer. Here is how:
    Take a random year, e.g. 1886 and proceed as shown in [I have replaced the -99 for missing data with a blank cell]
    http://www.leif.org/research/Wolf-Wolfer.xls [or if you don’t have Excel:]

    http://www.leif.org/research/Wolf-Wolfer.pdf

    For that year Wolfer reported 1.605-1.635 more groups than Wolf depending on if you average the whole year or the monthly averages given by H&S. The ratio given by H&S is 0.979, i.e. almost the same which clearly is wrong. Proceed the same way for all other years and all other observers and you’ll see that there is no wiggle room from my analysis.

  60. Leif,

    Thank you for the article.

    The variation in the relative magnitudes of various forms of solar energy reaching the Earth-Atmosphere system is of great interest to me.

    For the past ~2000 years the solar variation is either a relatively low magnitude contribution to a higher order total variation in the Earth-Atmosphere system or it is more. I do not know which case will be proven over time to be correct. I remain fascinated.

    Please keep up your involvement.

    John

  61. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 7:15 am
    For all the whiners:
    there is no wiggle room from my analysis.
    the magnitude of the effect of the weighting is now established and is no longer an open issue.

    The science is settled.
    Ken Schatten has been assimilated by the Borg.
    etc etc…

  62. Wolf Number = KW (10*G + S)
    Group Number = 12 KG * G
    and S was stated to be around 10*G , so H&S effectively simplified things by saying:

    20 * KW = 12 * KG

    But now we have a third k-factor, the derived 1.65 between Wolf and Wolfer group counting at the time of using the first formula.

    Thanks.

  63. Jim Cripwell said:
    ” to suggest that a new Maunder type solar [magnetic] minimum is not going to come, so that it becomes more difficult to suggest that global temperatures are going to fall in the near future. After all, The Team wants to keep the money gravy train running for a few more years. “

    Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on which side of the gravy train you’re sitting on) there is no established and accepted mechanism to explain how the Maunder cooling could have been caused by diminished solar activity.

    Of course we know that the Sun is the source of almost all of the energy that heats up the Earth. But the term ‘solar activity‘ refers specifically to variations in solar magnetic activity, e.g. sunspots, flares, CME’s etc. And as Dr. Svalgaard will be quick to point out, the total solar irradiation variation is virtually constant, up to inverse-square-law considerations, over solar cycles, 0.2% at most. [Except for ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which correlates more strongly with sunspot/flare activity. But there still is no established and accepted UV link here to terrestrial temperatures.]

    So, the correlation (Maunder::low_temps) is not a cause. And “What else could it be?” won’t fly as scientific proof either.

  64. Leif wrote –

    “The ionospheric daytime current system [two vortices, one in each hemisphere] stays fixed with relation to the Sun while the Earth rotates under it. At mid-latitudes, the direction of the current is North-to-South in the morning [Northern hemisphere] and South-North in the evening. The magnetic effect is perpendicular to the current and the compass needle will thus deviate in the East-West direction,deflected towards the East in the morning and towards the West in the evening. ”

    Now Leif,John Flamsteed ,a name crops up in this thread, was concerned with determining longitude so British ships could sail the ocean safely and not run into coastlines at night .He did something nobody else did before – he used mechanical modeling for the first time (Equatorial Coordinate System) to assign a cause for right ascension and the daily return of a star in an attempt to displace the 24 hour AM/PM system and the Lat/Long system as the only acceptable systems that reflect the Earth’s rotation to the Sun and more importantly – the number of rotations in proportion to 4 orbital circuits around the Sun.

    Now,bundling the Earth’s daily and orbital motion into right ascension looks like this for the reader –

    The reason why the Sun appears to scribe smaller or larger arcs with each rotation as it also moves around the Sun is due to the way Earth turns in a single circle to the central Sun in tandem with daily rotation.For readers who are not familiar with this –

    The Earth has two separate rotations to the central Sun,one is daily rotation which creates the AM/PM cycle and all the effects such as daylight/darkness,temperature fluctuations or even magnetic signatures and the orbital component which turns the planet once and coincident with its orbital period.It is even possible to see the polar coordinates being carried around in a circle to the central Sun by the orbital motion of Uranus –

    The clockwork solar system of Newton is modeled on 1465 rotations in 1461 AM/PM cycles hence it is like a pyramid built on its apex and so unstable is this modeling.It prevents appreciation of climate and even how to define planetary climate within a spectrum of polar or equatorial.It is also one of the greatest tragedies ever to befall our race as a human race that cannot keep one rotation in step with one 24 hour AM/PM cycle has bigger problems than climate to contend with.

  65. Jim Cripwell says:
    November 12, 2012 at 7:01 am

    ….Here again, if we wait for a few more years, we will know whether global temperatures are going to start falling.
    >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
    You might consider what Gerard Roe rediscovered [ In defense of Milankovitch, Geophysical Research Letters (link), Vol. 33, L24703, doi:10.1029/2006GL027817, 2006] and Nigel Calder knew back in 1974. It is not the actual temperature we should be looking at.

    …Gerard Roe realized a trivial mistake that had previously been done. And a similar mistake is being done by many people all the time – scientists as well as laymen; alarmists as well as skeptics. The problem is that people confuse functions and their derivatives; they say that something is “warm” even though they mean that it’s “getting warmer” or vice versa

    …the basic correct observation is the following: If you suddenly get more sunshine near the Arctic circle, you don’t immediately change the ice volume. Instead, you increase the rate with which the ice volume is decreasing (ice is melting). Isn’t this comment trivial?

    So the right quantity that should be compared with the insolation – i.e. the sunshine near the Arctic circle – is not the ice volume itself but its time derivative.….
    SOURCE

    In other words it is the rate of change in the rise of temperature that is important and that rate of change has been essentially zero for the last sixteen years. Global warming stopped 16 years ago, reveals Met Office report

  66. tallbloke says:
    November 12, 2012 at 8:05 am
    Ken Schatten has been assimilated by the Borg
    It would be a refreshing change if you could something worthwhile to the table instead…

  67. Tallbloke,

    Please stop with thread hijacking and filibustering of the conversation. You’ve made your point (quite poorly I might add), so quit repeating yourself. You’ve become a caricature of what you were in 2007/2008 when I first came across your name. Your thought was more reasoned then, but I’m afraid that you are the one that has been assimilated. I am as anti-AGW as you, but I still hope that the truth/facts win out regardless of my beliefs. Maybe I’m wrong on my thoughts. Maybe I’m right, and I do believe I’m right. But that shouldn’t stop the critical thinking process, or else we’ll not move forward at all.

  68. lateintheday says:
    November 12, 2012 at 6:57 am
    John Finn at 3:24am
    In your response to Tallbloke you say . . .
    “We have lower activity and NO cooling – and, please, don’t bring up the lag issue. We’ve seen a couple of posts recently which strongly suggest that the cooling during (or actually BEFORE) the Dalton Minimum was caused by the weak Dalton cycles. Ditto – the Maunder.”
    Would you kindly reconsider that statement? I don’t think it’s a logical argument. You’re assuming that a given external forcing will always met by a similar response. It takes no account of the condition of the ‘receiver’ at the time. When Tyson swung a punch and the opponent stood still, they got knocked out. When they rolled with it, it was a glancing blow. If the opponent was about dead on his feet, a little tap would finish them off.

    Ok – thanks for reminding me of the “complex system” argument. Another favourite of the solar crowd to explain the complete lack of response of global temperature to reduced solar activity.

  69. “Eddy (1976) introduced the notion that the Sun is a variable star”

    Could a star with a massive planetary system be invariable?

  70. P. Solar says:
    November 12, 2012 at 8:12 am
    20 * KW = 12 * KG
    It is a bit tricky. By convention KW is 0.6 for the standard observer [Locarno] and KG is 1.0 for the standard observer [Greenwich], so, indeed 20*0.6 = 12*1.
    The problem is that KG is not correct for the observers in H&S’s calibration [see my comment upthread].

  71. Dr. Svalgaard,

    Interesting and compelling work, as usual.

    From my observations here over the last five years the only “agenda” you seem to have is dispassionate investigation of the evidence.

  72. nutso fasst says:
    November 12, 2012 at 9:19 am
    Could a star with a massive planetary system be invariable?
    Solar-like stars are mostly [perhaps 80%] variable, but not with periods that match the massive planets, see slide 19 of http://www.leif.org/research/AGU%20Fall%202011%20SH34B-08.pdf
    But this is an active research area and there are thousands of stars to look at. Detection is somewhat hampered by the long time it takes to discover a cycle.
    If a mega-Jupiter is VERY close to the star it might be inside the so-called ‘sonic point’ of the atmosphere and so could affect magnetic effects on the star, much like Io can create aurorae on Jupiter; there are a few stars known where this happens. But for planets outside of the sonic point [for the Sun that is about 15 solar radii] the stellar wind becomes supersonic and the magnetic feedback stops.

  73. My take on the entire article: “Here’s why fudge factors x, y, z all make sense and thus have a consensus. (wringing hands) Now…can we take all these FFs, stuff ‘em into the black box, adore their purpose, and agree on the beauty of their utility/outcome? Pretty Please?”

    It all might be totally legit in the field of Solar Physics. But I felt a little dirty afterward.

  74. Gail Combs says, November 12, 2012 at 8:29 am

    In other words it is the rate of change in the rise of temperature that is important and that rate of change has been essentially zero for the last sixteen years. Global warming stopped 16 years ago, reveals Met Office report

    Not exactly true, it wonders about quite a bit. Where it goes next would seem in large part to depend on what Bob tells us is happening and eruptions going stratospheric. We’ll have to wait and see.

  75. Bruckner8 says:
    November 12, 2012 at 10:07 am
    It all might be totally legit in the field of Solar Physics. But I felt a little dirty afterward.
    Janitorial work, cleaning up [other people’s messes] is rarely a clean affair.

  76. Geoff Sharp

    ” so I am wondering if Mosher has special treatment here?”

    Do you think we landed on the moon?

  77. Johanus, you write “So, the correlation (Maunder::low_temps) is not a cause. And “What else could it be?” won’t fly as scientific proof either.”

    I agree with you completely. But you have not grasped what I am talking about. What I am suggesting is that the reason L&P’s paper was rejected in the first place, was because The Team thought it’s results could be interpreted as indicating that CAGW was wrong. Otherwise, why would the paper, which has now been published in a prestigeous journal, have been rejected in the first place?

  78. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 9:37 am

    …not with periods that match the massive planets, see slide 19 of http://www.leif.org/research/AGU%20Fall%202011%20SH34B-08.pdf

    Thanks for the reply and link. Your educational contributions are much appreciated.

    My layman’s logic was that even though gravitational effects of planets might not create measurably-corresponding cycles, they would cause some variation in energy output or direction. I wonder how many of the known exoplanets orbit a star known to be invariable.

  79. Leif

    Very interesting. One thing that is for sure, there is a real time experiment in progress on whether or not the strength of the sunspots in a solar cycle have an impact on climate. In 20-30 years we will know the results of this experiment (that is if the sunspots continue to decline).

    One thing that bothers me is to make definitive statements about our understanding of solar phenomenon. This is the trap that Hathaway got himself into, it would be sad to see a new consensus form that retards science.

    From my perspective there are three things to pay very close attention to in regards to the effect of the sunspot cycle (as opposed to the solar cycle) on the terra sphere. The first is the extent of the atmosphere, which we can directly measure through the drag on satellites and orbital debris. The second is the configuration of the Van Allen radiation belts. We have had data on this since the 1950’s. The third is the aurorae and its effect on the Earth itself. Strong solar flares and their resulting aurorae directly impose large electrical currents in the Earth’s crust. We saw that in 1989 and at other times when the high iron content in the Canadian shield disrupted power grids. When electricity flows through a resistor, it heats, and these currents are in the terawatt range.

    All three of these factors play into terrestrial climate and the changes in the near future (if the trend holds) compared to there recent past, should help bring a greater understanding of how small variations in solar activity effect climate (not to mention the fourth factor of cosmic rays and cloud formation).

    Interesting times!

  80. For the Earth’s climate consideration if the SSN is corrected by + or – 10% appears to make only small difference. What appears to be important is the phase difference between the Earth’s and solar magnetic field changes, whereby the solar field phase is dependant on the cycle length. It should be born in mind, that even strong cycles when out of phase produce cooling, and alternatively a weak cycle when in phase results in some warming.

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/EarthNV.htm

    So how does Dr. Svalgaard’s recalculation affect the above hypothesis?
    If Dr. S modifies only even or only the odd cycles that would affect calculations of past natural variability, but since he does modify chunk of cycles it makes no difference to multi-decadal variability, since the errors are in both directions and would average out.
    Far greater uncertainty is calculations the ripple on the Earth’s magnetic field. There are relatively good data from 1880’s, from which frequency can be isolated, but amplitude not so readily, but even so a good match to the N. Hemisphere temperature natural variability is obtained.

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/GSC1.htm

  81. Jim Cripwell says:
    November 12, 2012 at 11:20 am
    Otherwise, why would the paper, which has now been published in a prestigious journal, have been rejected in the first place?
    The reason given was that the statistics [at the time] was marginal. Now with many more measurements it is a lot better.

  82. Gail Combs you write “In other words it is the rate of change in the rise of temperature that is important and that rate of change has been essentially zero for the last sixteen years. Global warming stopped 16 years ago, reveals Met Office report.”

    I agree with you on the issue that it is the rate of change of temperature that is important. I do not agree that global warming has stopped. Basically, global temperatures have been rising ever since the LIA. The rate of rise of temperature since around 1850 has been about 0,06 C per decade. This is due to some form of natural factors, which we do not understand. There is no sign that this rate of warming have ceased. See http://bit.ly/V19Im8, and http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/MidSummer-MidWinter.htm.

    Since around 1970, CAGW is supposed to have started. This ought to have resulted in a rate of rise of temperature greatly in excess of 0.06 C per decade. This, had it occurred, would have been a CO2 signal, from which we could measure total climate sensitivity. This signal is not there, or at least I cannot find it. So what the recent pause in the rise in global temperatures indicates is not that warming has ceased, but that adding CO2 to the atmopshere has had no effect whatsoever on the rate of rise of temperature. That is the important point.

  83. Dennis Ray Wingo says:
    November 12, 2012 at 11:27 am
    One thing that bothers me is to make definitive statements about our understanding of solar phenomenon. This is the trap that Hathaway got himself into, it would be sad to see a new consensus form that retards science.
    We are only concerned about getting the data correct. As Hugh Hudson once remarked: “the data is weak, but the theory is weaker”. It is harder to build understanding on bad data.

  84. vukcevic says:
    November 12, 2012 at 11:30 am
    For the Earth’s climate consideration if the SSN is corrected by + or – 10% appears to make only small difference
    The correction is at times 50%, but I will agree that that makes no difference either.
    Your ideas about the connection of Earth’s and solar fields are spurious anyway, so any correction I make are irrelevant.

  85. Over at Icecap, there is a new & timely post on the same subject but different conclusions.
    See link:

    http://icecap.us/images/uploads/abduss_APR.pdf

    Russian scientist published in Applied Physics Research saying we are on the cusp on a new little ice age based on expected solar variation. He’s forecasting a drop of 6 w/m^2 in TSI over the next 30 years. I believe it has already been shown that according to AGW Guru Hansen that AGW is only contributing +0.6 w/m^2 :

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/05/15/global-warming-splodeified/

    and here :

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2012/01/31/jim-hansens-balance-problem-of-0-58-watts/

    So, the Russian is expecting a forcing in the opposite direction of AGW that is an order of magnitude larger! Now there’s something alarming ;)

    My conclusion : looks like solar science isn’t quite settled yet either :))

    Anyone care to comment / compare / contrast Leif’s post with this APR paper?

  86. Leif Svalgaard says:
    The correction is at times 50%, but I will agree that that makes no difference either.
    Your ideas about the connection of Earth’s and solar fields are spurious anyway, so any correction I make are irrelevant.

    Hi doc
    50% ?!
    Hey that’s something, does it come out from reliable data?
    It isn’t my ideas that matter, it what comes out of the reliable data, you see you do it too, we look at good data and then make our conclusion.
    You also got the data from SIDC and Jackson et al, put them together, and you get exactly what I got, the good match for the natural variability in the n. hemisphere.

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/GSC1.htm

    spurious or not it is the best match for a temperature variability by using non-climate data that anyone has achieved in the whole history of the climate science that is employing hundreds of scientists in the most illustrious institutions.
    We should all drink to that.
    Cheers.

  87. AJB says:
    November 12, 2012 at 10:10 am

    Gail Combs says, November 12, 2012 at 8:29 am

    In other words it is the rate of change in the rise of temperature that is important and that rate of change has been essentially zero for the last sixteen years. Global warming stopped 16 years ago, reveals Met Office report

    Not exactly true, it wonders about quite a bit.

    I was challenged on this point at another blog. Here is what I said for RSS since 1997. (I realize this is 15 years and 10 months to be exact.)

    I plotted RSS from 1997 to date and the trend. Then I plotted the derivative of RSS from 1997 to date and got the linear trend of that. Both linear trends are virtually identical with a slope of essentially 0, although both are very slightly negative. I can only conclude that whichever way you look at it, RSS show no trend since 1997. If you can somehow prove RSS has a positive trend in any way, shape or form since 1997, please show it. I never did get a reply.

    http://www.woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:1997/plot/rss/from:1997/derivative/plot/rss/from:1997/trend/plot/rss/from:1997/derivative/trend

  88. Sparks says:
    November 12, 2012 at 12:10 pm
    Is there a reduction in peak solar activity since approx 1988 in your calibration?
    I think in everyone’s calibration.

    Jeff L says:
    November 12, 2012 at 12:27 pm
    Russian scientist published in Applied Physics Research saying we are on the cusp on a new little ice age based on expected solar variation
    The Russian paper makes a silly extrapolation of a non-existing trend. It takes its starting point in TSI this past minimum being lower than at the previous minimum [which has been shown to be an artifact and thus didn’t happen]:

    then goes whole hog with this extrapolation

    I wouldn’t put much credence in this

    vukcevic says:
    November 12, 2012 at 12:28 pm
    50% ?! Hey that’s something, does it come out from reliable data?
    Slide 45 of http://www.leif.org/research/History%20and%20Calibration%20of%20Sunspot%20Numbers.pdf
    spurious or not it is the best match for a temperature variability by using non-climate data that anyone has achieved in the whole history of the climate science that is employing hundreds of scientists in the most illustrious institutions.
    Dunning-Kruger strikes again: “cognitive bias in which unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average.

  89. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 1:02 pm

    Sparks says:
    November 12, 2012 at 12:10 pm
    Is there a reduction in peak solar activity since approx 1988 in your calibration?
    I think in everyone’s calibration.

    Is all the fuss about a grand modern maximum in solar activity?
    TBH I think the adjustments are fine and not controversial at all, it’s pretty straight forward actually.

  90. Leif Svalgaard says: November 12, 2012 at 1:02 pm
    …………..
    Not at all.
    The credit goes to the SIDC data collectors and to the meticulous work by Jackson et al.
    I have done no more than adding two sets of numbers, as you said elsewhere ‘any fool can do that’. Go on, you can do it, it takes only 5 min (see pages 5 & 6).
    Or may be not, the new found perceptive may have serious consequences, exactly opposite to the Dunning-Kruger.

    At least we agree on Abdussamatov’s method

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/SSN1.htm

  91. Steven Mosher says:
    November 12, 2012 at 10:51 am
    Geoff Sharp
    Do you think we landed on the moon?

    Ah, Mosh has played the Lewandowsky card.

    And here comes Leif to join him:

    Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 1:02 pm
    Dunning-Kruger strikes again: “cognitive bias in which unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average.

    Credibility rating now zero – game over, thanks for playing guys.

  92. “Recent research [Svalgaard & Cliver, 2005, 2007, 2010; Lockwood & Owens, 2011] has shown that it is possible to infer the solar wind speed and the magnetic field strength from suitable, newly defined, indices of geomagnetic activity that have been found to respond to different combinations of these solar wind parameters, allowing the influence of each to be separately extracted and calibrated by comparison with the space-based data measured near the Earth, effectively inverting the ‘response function’ of the Earth to the solar wind. Figure 8 shows one result of this inversion.”

    While here you say: “IDV is strongly correlated with HMF B, but is blind to solar wind speed V”
    http://www.leif.org/research/Heliospheric%20Magnetic%20Field%201835-2010.pdf (slide 3)

  93. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:30 am

    Ray: Leif, where can I download

    Leif: To play with:

    http://www.leif.org/research/TSI-SSN-Guess.xls

    http://www.leif.org/research/Solar-DM.xls

    Ray: Thank you.

    I used the square root of first series above because in my experience that gives similar short term variations in sunspot numbers at maxima and minima. In this case it also gives very similar envelopes for the maxima and minima after 1750 when the numbers are more reliable.

    Then I did a high resolution spectral analysis, and I find that the best estimates of the cycle components near the main 11 year cycle are in order of strength:
    11.05, 10.49, 10.01, 11.79 years.
    The interesting thing about these periods is the beats between them.
    11.05 and 10.49 years gives 207 years beats.
    11.05 and 10.01 years gives 106 year beats.
    The other various pairs give beats of 220, 177, 95 and 66 years.

    *** We see the strongest beats are very close to, and others are generally clustering around the C14 and Be10 periods of 208 and 104 years. ***

    We cannot say whether the longer periods cause the beats or the beats cause the longer periods, but we can say that the two are intimately linked.

    I find that this phenomenon of beat cycles and longer cycles matching up is very common in cycles analysis of many natural time series.

  94. Jim Cripwell says:
    November 12, 2012 at 11:20 am

    Johanus, you write “So, the correlation (Maunder::low_temps) is not a cause. And “What else could it be?” won’t fly as scientific proof either.”

    I agree with you completely. But you have not grasped what I am talking about. What I am suggesting is that the reason L&P’s paper was rejected in the first place, was because The Team thought it’s results could be interpreted as indicating that CAGW was wrong. Otherwise, why would the paper, which has now been published in a prestigeous journal, have been rejected in the first place?

    I think I did grasp your ‘gravy train’ theme. And the L&P theory would help CAGW, if coupled with the idea that it also brings cooling, because it provides a convenient excuse to explain the absence of rising temps. I was merely pointing out that L&P provides no mechanism to explain Earth’s climate, and thus is orthogonal to the CAGW argument.

    Where did you get the idea that “the Team” thought L&P could damage their cause?

    I assume the first paper was rejected because the claims were considered tenuous, based on the high variance in the plots. Nevertheless, the signal of fading sunspots was extracted. Not sure if the recent F10.7 “spots per unit flux” decline, which further strengthens the theory, was mentioned in the first paper.

  95. Werner Brozek says, November 12, 2012 at 12:36 pm

    Werner, these may help:
    UAH v RSS
    GISS v HadCRUT4
    Summary

    A linear trend over the entire RSS plot has a slightly negative trend of y = -8E-07x.

    There’s no doubt a reasonable explanation for the slight oddity highlighted on the summary, given that the two pairs of series are ‘measuring’ different things. Good fuel for meaningless comparative land/satellite temperature linear trend blog wars though.

  96. There is a detectable Jupiter orbit relationship to solar cycles, see the Archibald post at WUWT referenced above. Leif dismissed any possible magnetic effect, then mentioned that magnetic feedback is stopped by sonic solar wind at 15 solar diameters. Jupiter has 318 Earth mass units and 5.2 Earth distance units from the Sun. Jupiter has 20,000 Earth Gauss magnetic units and we are discussing magnetic storms on the Suns surface. It is not unreasonable that disruptions in the outer wave field can force some periodic changes at the source.

  97. vukcevic says:
    November 12, 2012 at 1:52 pm
    The credit goes to the SIDC data collectors and to the meticulous work by Jackson et al.
    There is nothing wrong with the data. The fault is with you.

    tallbloke says:
    November 12, 2012 at 2:03 pm
    ”Dunning-Kruger strikes again: “cognitive bias in which unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average.”
    Credibility rating now zero – game over, thanks for playing guys.

    It looks to me that you are trying very hard to qualify for that characterization, too.

    Ulric Lyons says:
    November 12, 2012 at 2:34 pm
    “Figure 8 shows one result of this inversion.”
    Another result is the solar wind speed, but there was a limit to how many Figures I could show. But here is one that compares my determination of the speed with that measured by spacecraft [OMNI data]: http://www.leif.org/research/Compare-OMNI-Leif-Speed.png
    My curve is offset 50 km/sec in order not to obscure the OMNI curve. As you can see, I do an excellent job.

  98. Faux Science Slayer says:
    November 12, 2012 at 4:21 pm
    It is not unreasonable that disruptions in the outer wave field can force some periodic changes at the source.
    Perhaps, but it is just not supported by physics.

  99. “Solar activity is the result of solar magnetic fields.”
    ========
    But what causes the solar magnetic fields?

    It can’t be due to solar activity, otherwise this is saying that solar activity causes solar activity, which doesn’t really tell us anything.

  100. ferd berple says:
    November 12, 2012 at 4:50 pm
    But what causes the solar magnetic fields?
    The Sun runs a ‘self-sustaining dynamo’ that makes strong magnetic fields out of the weak magnetic fields left over from the previous cycle. An interesting question is: but where did the FIRST magnetic fields come from, as clearly the dynamo needs a pre-existing field?
    That is a very deep and important question that we could discuss at some other occasion. In the meantime google ‘biermann battery effect’.

  101. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 4:59 pm
    The Sun runs a ‘self-sustaining dynamo’ that makes strong magnetic fields out of the weak magnetic fields left over from the previous cycle.
    =======
    Does this imply the rotational energy of the sun is being converted to magnetic energy? How is this rotation maintained over time? Is the differential rotation at the sun’s poles driven by magnetic force? Is the underlying causes similar to the polar jets we see in more massive objects?

  102. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 11, 2012 at 10:28 pm
    Actually not, the magnetic field falls off with the cube of the distance.
    ======
    Doesn’t the near field fall off as the cube and the far field as the square?

  103. ferd berple says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:09 pm
    Does this imply the rotational energy of the sun is being converted to magnetic energy?
    To some extent, but the major part of the energy comes from the convection driven by the fusion engine in the core.
    How is this rotation maintained over time?
    It is not, the sun is slowing down over billions of years.
    Is the differential rotation at the sun’s poles driven by magnetic force?
    mostly not, the main driver in maintaining differential rotation is the redistribution of angular momentum by non-axisymmetric motions, particularly convection.
    Is the underlying causes similar to the polar jets we see in more massive objects?
    No those relativistic jets [if that is what you have in mind] come from accretion disks of gas and dust pulled toward the massive objects by their immense gravity, whirling like water flowing around a bathtub drain.

  104. ferd berple says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:28 pm
    Doesn’t the near field fall off as the cube and the far field as the square?
    No, if the magnetic field were a monopole it would fall off as the square, but since magnetic fields come in pairs [a dipole] the field falls off as the cube. This is the case for a vacuum [or a non-conductor like air]. If the field is in a plasma, it will be ‘frozen in’ and move with the plasma. If the plasma is expanding spherically, the embedded magnetic field will fall of as the plasma density, that is with the square. If the plasma is rotating, the field in the equator will be wound up into a spiral and at large distances fall off linearly. If all this sounds complicated it is because it is.

  105. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:30 pm (replying to)

    ferd berple says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:09 pm

    How is this rotation maintained over time?
    It is not, the sun is slowing down over billions of years.
    Is the differential rotation at the sun’s poles driven by magnetic force?
    mostly not, the main driver in maintaining differential rotation is the redistribution of angular momentum by non-axisymmetric motions, particularly convection.

    ….

    But isn’t your answer exactly what a un-balanced force acting on a twirling multi-body system in free-fall do?

    The small but repeatedly changing un-balanced forces as the barycenter of the solar system moved from within the sun’s churning atmosphere of plasma would do just what you described above: Make permutations in the circulation of the gasses in the sun. These period changes – some additive, some subtractive to gas flow but all with different delay times between time-of-maximum-influence and time-of-minimum-influence could/would make changes in the sun’s emitted power.

    A periodic 1/2 of one degree change in the earth’s temperature only requires a 1/2 % change in radiation received by the earth. Why would such a change NOT be assumed to occur?

    Seems to me that “any” change in the sun’s circulation or magnetic fields that could change that 1/2 of one percent change in received radiation (effect on cloud nuclei, ionosphere, Van Allen belts, cosmic ray shielding, solar wind, IR/UV ratios, etc would begin the small impact needed to change final temperatures here

  106. Ulric Lyons says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:40 pm
    As you can see, I do an excellent job.”
    Yes that is very good at that scale. What is it like at a daily scale over say 1 year?

    At a daily scale it is a lot less precise. The relation begins to run into trouble as scales shorter than a month. The reason is that the theory assumes that over the time interval where I calculate the speed I have to assume that there is equal amounts of positive and negative magnetic flux. This will hold over a longish interval, but not one a daily or [even worse] hourly scale, and a hundred years ago we had no detailed measurements of the direction of the magnetic field from hour to hour.

    RACookPE1978 says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:49 pm
    But isn’t your answer exactly what a un-balanced force acting on a twirling multi-body system in free-fall do?
    No, the mechanism would work just the same even if the sun were alone in the universe.

  107. About this Dunning-Kruger thing: skill, or knowledge for that matter, is a relative thing, as it can easily get in the way of new developments and insights. There is this thing you may call “knowledge bias”: the more you know, the more selective your perception tends to become. It is a bit like a Faustian price you have to pay once you get too stiff with what you know.

    Not knowing something can be an advantage, depending on the situation. Knowledge usually is context-specific, and may very well become useless outside this context.

    The art is to know what to know and when to use or not to use this knowledge. This is especially so doing frontier work or creative work.

    Not taking sides here, just want to add some perspective.

  108. Jurgen says:
    November 12, 2012 at 6:46 pm
    About this Dunning-Kruger thing: skill, or knowledge for that matter, is a relative thing, as it can easily get in the way of new developments and insights.
    The D-K effect is not about knowledge being useful or not. It is about believing that you have more knowledge and insight than you actually have, and that is not useful in ‘frontier work or creative work’ or any work, for that matter.

  109. From Leif Svalgaard on November 12, 2012 at 4:59 pm:
    An interesting question is: but where did the FIRST magnetic fields come from, as clearly the dynamo needs a pre-existing field?
    A pre-existing field is not needed when generating one by running a current through a wire. I would think at some point there would be enough of a difference in electric potential to allow lightning or otherwise a flow of charges that would create a magnetic field. Then it’s just that happening when and where it can induce other current flows, etc.

    That is a very deep and important question that we could discuss at some other occasion. In the meantime google ‘biermann battery effect’.
    Biermann battery is an ignored orphan 3-line Wikipedia entry:

    In astrophysics, the Biermann battery is a process by which a weak seed magnetic field can be generated from zero initial conditions.[1] The relative motion between electrons and ions is driven by rotation. The process was discovered by Ludwig Biermann in 1950.[2]

    #2 of the 2 references is this 1997 paper. Abstract talks of rotating black holes in plasma. #1 reference, 2008 paper, discusses simulations of Population III stars, when the Sun is Population I. (Good thing with Pop III simulations, no fear of falsification by observations.)

  110. AJB says:
    November 12, 2012 at 4:14 pm
    There’s no doubt a reasonable explanation for the slight oddity highlighted on the summary, given that the two pairs of series are ‘measuring’ different things.

    Thank you! Also, perhaps the oceans have a moderating affect closer to the “ground”, thereby not allowing the extremes that are present in the satellite data for El Nino and La Nina.

  111. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    November 12, 2012 at 8:49 pm
    A pre-existing field is not needed when generating one by running a current through a wire.
    How do you generate a current in a plasma? To do this you have to separate charges of different signs. How do you do that? With a magnetic field…

  112. When I see people in general and kids in particular with their heads up their Droids and IPhones,
    swimming in data with no real intelligence, maybe a little Carrington event wouldn’t be so bad.

  113. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 5:30 pm
    To some extent, but the major part of the energy comes from the convection driven by the fusion engine in the core.
    =========
    So, you are saying that the fusion energy of the sun drives the magnetic field. But in the opening you said: “Solar activity is the result of solar magnetic fields.”

    So really, what this says is that solar activity is the result of solar activity. Without solar activity there would be no solar activity.

  114. From Leif Svalgaard on November 12, 2012 at 9:26 pm:
    How do you generate a current in a plasma? To do this you have to separate charges of different signs. How do you do that?

    I dimly recall speculation of that happening when the proto-star “flares on” and begins fusing, with the released energy from fusion at the center changing the gathered ordinary matter into plasma, as it would subsequently accreted ordinary matter.

    After that gravity keeps the heavier nuclei (protons) together while the electrons are separated by basic electrostatic forces.

    Where do the electrons go? Neutrons are needed when building heavier nuclei, electrons could be used up for that. Or are they blown off with the solar wind when the ordinary matter becomes plasma, the neutrons are made without them?

    But then at some point the material of stars can cool and become ordinary matter, if it doesn’t get incorporated into a black hole or neutron star etc upon star death. Where do the nuclei get their electrons?

    Always more questions, needing more answers.

  115. As our civilization depends increasingly on space-borne assets and on a delicate and vulnerable earth-bound infrastructure, solar activity and its potential impact becomes of increasing importance and relevance.

    Thank you, Leif, you nailed it with this first sentence. I work with the INFRAGARD Electromagentic Pulse Special Interest Group & will be sure to pass this along. “Delicate and vulnerable earth-bound infrastructure” is a very elegant way of portraying our current situation.

  116. ferd berple says:
    November 12, 2012 at 10:29 pm
    So, you are saying that the fusion energy of the sun drives the magnetic field.
    The dynamo needs convection to function. The convection is the way the fusion energy gets to the surface. No fusion energy, no convection, no magnetic field, no solar activity.

  117. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    November 12, 2012 at 10:50 pm
    I dimly recall speculation of that happening when the proto-star “flares on” and begins fusing, with the released energy from fusion at the center changing the gathered ordinary matter into plasma
    It is not the fusion energy that makes the plasma. Any matter hot enough becomes a plasma, so the ordinary contraction to a star generates enough heat to ionize the matter long before fusion sets in. The electrons are still hanging around and any ‘parcel’ of the plasma is electrically neutral. Here is a good description of the fusion process and of where what goes: http://www.tim-thompson.com/fusion.html#ppcycle

  118. Ferd berple

    It is quite simple,all rotating celestial objects with exposed fluid compositions display differential rotation but of course scientists manage to exempt the rotating fluid interior of our own planet from this common trait despite the fact that the Earth has a 26 mile spherical deviation and a very active surface crust.Despite the fact that the low viscosity fluid pours out of every volcano and crustal boundary,geologists still insist on a high viscosity fluid to suit their ‘convection cell’ models.

    This is what the Earth’s interior looks like and if readers can’t handle rotational dynamics as it really exists then they should take up some other pursuit that doesn’t involve flinging assertions around and then losing control –

    The problem with modelers is they make themselves bigger than the topic they are trying to discuss.

  119. Leif Svalgaard says: November 12, 2012 at 4:38 pm
    m.a.v: The credit goes to the SIDC data collectors and to the meticulous work by Jackson et al.

    L.S: There is nothing wrong with the data. The fault is with you.

    Dr, Svalgaard, that is most hilarious thing I heard on these web pages.
    You say:
    1. There is nothing wrong with SFDC sunspot magnetic data – correct
    2. There is nothing wrong with Jackson et al geomagnetic data – correct
    3. Vukcevic you added together the data and you got a very close approximation of the natural variability in the N. Hemisphere

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/GSC1.htm

    Vukcevic the FAULT is with you! You must not add together two sets of magnetic data! Forbidden! Vukcevic you are not aloud to play with science; do you realize if you show that natural variability comes from the solar output what does that mean?
    Vukcevic you are bad example to your children. Vukcevic you have Dunning-Kruger syndrome.

  120. Leif Svalgaard says: November 12, 2012 at 5:36 pm

    (to vukcevic) Sadly, you remind me of http://mentalfitnessnow.com/category/mindfulness/
    extracts from the above:
    …..This morning on the way to work I observed a chicken that had escaped from someone’s garden. It was nervously trying to get back into the garden through the fence..
    ……My home computer is very slow, and getting very frustrated by my computers ever increasing slowness, the more I tried to do, the slower it got!
    …….self-hate is really the same thing as sheer egoism, and in the long run breeds the same isolation and despair….

    Huh, Dr. S
    that chicken has a real serious problem.

  121. From Leif Svalgaard on November 12, 2012 at 11:13 pm:
    It is not the fusion energy that makes the plasma. Any matter hot enough becomes a plasma, so the ordinary contraction to a star generates enough heat to ionize the matter long before fusion sets in.

    I knew that to be true for the center, concentrating energy by compression, basic physics, requirement for fusion. I was thinking about the matter surrounding the plasma in the middle that isn’t yet hot enough to become plasma, but the energy released when fusing starts does convert it to plasma. I could have been clearer with my writing.

    Thanks for the reading material.

  122. very interesting and engaged discussion :)
    For those who still find planetary cycles interesting, I have a thread on http://solarcycle24com.proboards.com/index.cgi?board=general&action=display&thread=324&page=12

    My view is that the Sun operates in two modi: normal and grand minimum
    The individual sunspot cycles are modulated by three planetary cycles of ~10, 11 and 12 years (yes I saw Svalgaards possible explaination of these cycles). And these cycles have longer beat-cycles, like the Gleissberg of ~96 years.

    Recent Gleissberg lows are around years 1620, 1700, 1800, 1900 and 2010 (next 2075). Often the Gleissberg lows come in pairs (two narrow lows, then two distant), and the ongoing Gleissberg low is rather distant from the previos one (while the next one will be narrow).
    Grand minima can be triggered by a Gleissberg low.

    I dont think the sunspot cycles were unusual strong in the 20th century, but we have had an unusual long Gleissberg cycle (over 100 years). That may explain some climate changes recent decades.

    My work is mainly based on cycles and patterns. I relate the cycles to planetary cycles, but have no proof or physical theories. I am a stockmarket trader, and just as I see patterns in the stockmarket, I see patterns in the sunspot cycles.
    I hope my work can inspire to research for validity and explainations of the patterns I find :)

    Jan B :)

  123. Jurgen says:
    November 12, 2012 at 6:46 pm

    About this Dunning-Kruger thing: skill, or knowledge for that matter, is a relative thing, as it can easily get in the way of new developments and insights. There is this thing you may call “knowledge bias”: the more you know, the more selective your perception tends to become. It is a bit like a Faustian price you have to pay once you get too stiff with what you know.

    Not knowing something can be an advantage, depending on the situation. Knowledge usually is context-specific, and may very well become useless outside this context.

    The art is to know what to know and when to use or not to use this knowledge. This is especially so doing frontier work or creative work.

    Not taking sides here, just want to add some perspective.

    Ray: Well said Jurgen. I wish the moderators (if there are some) would warn people about saying this DK stuff.

  124. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 6:57 pm
    Jurgen says:
    November 12, 2012 at 6:46 pm
    About this Dunning-Kruger thing:

    Thanks for the comment Leif, I am a bit slow reacting to it as I was already way too far in the little hours of the early morning.

    Psychology is messy. In my opinion it is not a proper science. As with other social sciences it gets inevitably too much entangled with all kinds of human values, goals and politics to be able to apply the strict rules of physical science. Still, the social sciences may be useful for practical purposes if you realize this difference. But again, it is messy.

    As for you diagnose of Mr. Vukcevic, I rather go with your good information on solar activity. Your efforts are much appreciated.

  125. Johanus says:
    November 12, 2012 at 8:18 am

    “So, the correlation (Maunder::low_temps) is not a cause. And “What else could it be?” won’t fly as scientific proof either.”

    It has been sufficient for CO2 to be labeled the cause of the modern rise in temperatures.

    That is all they’ve done, “there’s nothing else, so it has to be CO2, and see the model I explicitly constructed so calculated temps rise with co2 is proof”!
    I don’t know when that became “Science”, and I don’t understand how so many “Scientists” can stand there and not say anything.

  126. Jurgen says:November 13, 2012 at 5:24 am
    Thanks for the comment Leif. As for you diagnose of Mr. Vukcevic, I rather go with your…

    Jurgen
    Thanks, you saved me shrink’s fee, no need to look for a second opinion.
    Beside

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/GSC1.htm

    there is this

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/TMC.htm

    and

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/SSN-NAP.htm

    not to mentioned

    http://www.vukcevic.talktalk.net/LFC2.htm

    all are apparently impossible, spurious or outside of knowledge box of science. I only bring to your attention what is in the data, no more than a simpleminded messenger.
    Far too many people take themselves too seriously.
    BTW, Jurgen what did you make of that poor chicken? in :
    L.S. Sadly, you remind me of http://mentalfitnessnow.com/category/mindfulness/

    Jurgen says I am a bit slow reacting to it as I was already way too far in the little hours of the early morning.
    Jurgen go and ‘sleep on it’.

  127. I think tallbloke and others need to be careful when ascribing warming to the sun. There may have been no warming at all. With all the adjustments to reduce historic temperatures necessary to create warming and when it is very possible they are wrong, the basis of your argument may be mistaken. If so, the 1930s were as warm as we are right now and there is no need to ascribe something to the sun that doesn’t exist.

    This leads into a conjecture I have been forming and may have mentioned before. I would like to know if anyone knows of any work along these lines. The theory itself is quite simple:

    Solar magnetic storms (CMEs) lead to short term reduction in clouds on Earth. During these periods of a few days to a couple of weeks the planet receives more solar radiation and warms. These short term warming bursts work to generally warm the planet over what would otherwise occur.

    Naturally, it would be difficult to tease a signal out of short term noise since this small but persistent effect looks exactly like noise. The long term effect (at least during the present mode of Milankovitch cooling) would be a warming when there are more CMEs and cooling when there are fewer of them. If there are fewer CMEs when the Sun is quiet, then we would expect those times to cool. That could explain the Maunder and other cool periods.

    This conjecture might even have impacts on the faint sun paradox. So, does anyone know of any work in this area?

  128. Ray Tomes

    In creative science work,and that hasn’t been in quite some considerable time given what passes for science today,you are expected to have an overall picture and know what to discard,what to accept,what is irrelevant,how to move information around between disciplines and all the things mechanical or computer modeling cannot do.Poor Leif here had a bad day and let his assertions run out of control.

    Try Pascal –

    “There are different kinds of right understanding; some have right understanding in a certain order of things, and not in others, where they go astray. Some draw conclusions well from a few premises, and this displays an acute judgment.Others draw conclusions well where there are many premises”

    http://oregonstate.edu/instruct/phl302/texts/pascal/pensees-a.html#SECTION I

    The idea of the Earth as a greenhouse and pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere has the same effect as a greenhouse would be laughable as a premise were it not that the opposing side lack any sort of foundation for defining planetary climate or seem intent in joining the modeling pseudoscience.

    I have little hope that readers could understand Pascal properly as he himself said the ability to balance conceptions and perceptions is rare in the individual and rarer still in this atmosphere of mathematical modeling yet perhaps it will ring true for one or two readers who understand that ‘intuitive’ does not equate with ‘guesswork’ but rather than background against which conclusions are drawn and information gets moved around –

    ”All mathematicians would then be intuitive if they had clear sight, for they do not reason incorrectly from principles known to them; and intuitive minds would be mathematical if they could turn their eyes to the principles of mathematics to which they are unused.
    The reason, therefore, that some intuitive minds are not mathematical is that they cannot at all turn their attention to the principles of mathematics. But the reason that mathematicians are not intuitive is that they do not see what is before them, and that, accustomed to the exact and plain principles of mathematics, and not reasoning till they have well inspected and arranged their principles, they are lost in matters of intuition where the principles do not allow of such arrangement. They are scarcely seen; they are felt rather than seen; there is the greatest difficulty in making them felt by those who do not of themselves perceive them. These principles are so fine and so numerous that a very delicate and very clear sense is needed to perceive them, and to judge rightly and justly when they are perceived, without for the most part being able to demonstrate them in order as in mathematics, because the principles are not known to us in the same way, and because it would be an endless matter to undertake it. We must see the matter at once, at one glance, and not by a process of reasoning, at least to a certain degree. And thus it is rare that mathematicians are intuitive and that men of intuition are mathematicians, because mathematicians wish to treat matters of intuition mathematically and make themselves ridiculous, wishing to begin with definitions and then with axioms, which is not the way to proceed in this kind of reasoning. Not that the mind does not do so, but it does it tacitly, naturally, and without technical rules; for the expression of it is beyond all men, and only a few can feel it.”

  129. I found Leif’s discussion here interesting and non-controversial. (Think you Dr. Svalgaard!!) Note that he is providing a status update of an international effort of a number of scientist which is of great interest to the solar community (AFRL’s involvement is telling). I do not know this for a fact, but I feel confident that this group does not have a CAGW agenda one way or another.

    Concerned as I am about civility on WUWT and having some time today so I analyzed the dialog between Geoff Sharp and Leif. I started with Geoff Sharp because his was the first criticism. To wit: “The GSN values are questioned by some but their argument have holes that have yet not been answered.” The first element of the supporting argument appears to be: “Schatten seems to have had a memory loss on the method used but there are two k factor columns against each observer that are not explained.” This must be a reference to something not in Leif’s discussion and no link was provided. As presented, the point has little content. The next element of the criticism appears to be: “Of more importance is that H&S were 100% aware of the Wolf and Wolfer method of counting groups as can be seen in the data notes associated with Wolf’s BIBLIOGRAPHY notes that form the base data of the GSN.” This again refers to information not presented and again strikes me as a statement whose relevance is implicit and which escaped me. Then we get to the unambiguous criticism which is an ad-hominem attack: “Leif is in the business of ironing the record flat, agenda driven science should be accepted for what it is and more heavily scrutinized.”

    Geoff’s next post – is a link to his critique of the Livingston and Penn effect with references to other presentations. This is reasonable with the caveat that there is a lot of related published activity and presentations in 2011 and 2012 so the science is evolving. After about an hour of review, I could not convince myself that the DeToma Brussels presentation in May 2012 was contradicting the content of the September 2012 Livingston, Penn and Svalgaard paper. In any event, the validity of the L&P effect is a footnote to the historical record reconstruction Leif is reporting to us.

    There is some more ad-hominem back and forth between various posters. Geoff then complains about Mosher’s comments getting approved before his. I have noticed this on my comments from time to time and am convinced there is no WUWT moderator conspiracy to control the discourse at work here!

    What saddens me here is that Geoff has some good work on his site. The reputation of his work is lessened by his resorting to an ad-hominem attack. I think one of the most interesting results Leif reports is that a significant body of work: Hoyt & Schatten published (and presumably peer reviewed) in the mid 90s must be re-analyzed. A solid critique on whether the re-analysis is justified would be far more useful than what Geoff originally posted. If indeed the Hoyt and Schatten work had errors, it would be interesting to understand how they were undiscovered for so long.

  130. vukcevic says:
    November 13, 2012 at 6:50 am

    Jurgen says:

    Thanks for your comments.

    Leif may be blunt some times, but I give him credit for his honesty. Whether you agree with him or not, he is transparent and that is a big pro.

    You asked for my opinion on the chicken story. I see a similarity with this Dunning-Kruger idea. In itself the DK phenomenon in my opinion does exist. In actual fact I think it is pretty wide spread and has many variations also within the scientific community. The problem of course is to diagnose it correctly, within yourself and within others.

    The chicken is wired not to recognize the fence as a fence. In his normal natural environment if she can see through something, she can pass through it. In a sense a human belief may act the same way and there you have the DK mechanism. As knowledge and believe tend to organize our perception of the world around us, we start selecting information which means we leave information out as well to the extent we are kind of blind for it, it simply does not get through our perception sieve.

    I think these are fundamental general characteristics of our information processing. We all are subject to it, scientist and amateurs alike. An amateur may happily go along with it, but a scientist may not, his professional standards require him to subject himself to the “DK-test” on a regular basis. Maybe not by going to a shrink, but by being open to critique from others who can detect his blind spots he himself can not. A forum like this gives plenty of opportunity for that. In that sense an honest critique is more of a gift and less of an attack.

    Maybe this elaboration is a bit OT but as mr. Svalgaard and mr. Vukcevic do regularly clash, I hope some perspective here may serve a purpose.

  131. Figure 8 [left]: Heliospheric magnetic field strength at Earth inferred from the cosmic ray record [Steinhilber et al., 2010]. The deep excursions to zero or even un-physical negative values are not understood and may be artefacts caused by too aggressive extrapolation from modulation potential to field strength.

    Whatever cosmic ray causes, the records of the last three millennia after Steinhilber et al. 2010, it can be compared with solar tide functions of five relevant outer couples in the solar system:

    It seems that the time scale calibration of the cosmic ray spectrum is not referenced on astronomical landmarks; to fit the time scale of the tide function it was slightly calibrateted by
    ~ +10%.

    If this is a fact, it means that the geometry of solar tide functions have a connection to the cosmic ray frequncies and to the global temperatures.

    V.

  132. Leif Svalgaard says:
    November 12, 2012 at 9:26 pm

    “How do you generate a current in a plasma? To do this you have to separate charges of different signs. How do you do that? With a magnetic field…”

    Leif, you are usually infallible (any indication to the contrary we ignore). But to generate an electric current in a plasma, all you have to do is accelerate the plasma. The electrons get going faster than the protons, hence the electric current and the orthogonal magnetic field. This is the principle behind magnetohydrodynamics.

  133. Jurgen says: November 13, 2012 at 11:21 am
    ……..
    Jurgen
    You need to revisit your old text books. Dr. Svalgaard and I are really good friends and enjoy a bit of a friendly banter, he is a scientist of world repute, I am an ordinary Joe blog .
    On the psychology front, perhaps you know what you are talking about, I have no slightest idea, so you psychology expertise may be valued more elsewhere, it’s all a bit of voodoo ‘science’ to me.
    Thanks for the bit of theory on the chicken’s psychoanalysis, btw, I gather the chickens–specifically for sacrifice—are big in the voodoo.
    Hope you had a good sleep.

  134. Thanks!
    The comments do take the safe road though by limiting them to the safe ground of variation effects on technology in place of the more pressing issue of solar variation NOT incorporated in climate models to any meaningful extent. The climate models that minimize solar effects and hold ocean cylces as effectively constant cycle variations are harming science and public policy simultaneously. Avoiding controvery on these huge issues does not make them go away.

  135. Resource guy.

    I know,you think this website here thinks it is influential and maybe even has a hint of moral superiority against modeling which effectively would load the rest of humanity with an awful premise that the Earth is a greenhouse with humanity in charge of the temperature dial within .

    From my seat ,this website has about the same influence as say ,’Occupy Wall Street’ for all the modelers care for the simple reason that they own the education system.I am not talking of the anti-competitive peer review process at the University level where reputations and salaries rely on bandwagon ideologies but rather by the young kids who are given games to play on zapping ‘bad carbon dioxide ‘ molecules and if the modelers understand one thing it is time is on their side.

    We exist in an era where ‘science’ can’t even keep one rotation of the Earth in step with one 24 hour AM/PM cycle because every adult here was once a child and learned the idiotic reasoning back in high school and now can’t change,not even when daily rises and falls in temperature respond to one rotation of the planet.Now that is power over the individual and the community,it may be wrong but it is what it is.

  136. Clouds pass overhead. Chicken crossing road sees pattern in light falling on pavement.

    Chicken looks up at source of pattern, sees Sun. Chicken stares at Sun until Chicken sees Sun pulsing.

    Chicken doesn’t see approaching truck.

    Question: Why did Chicken cross the road?

    Answer: “Why” is irrelevant. The mechanism was transfer of momentum from the truck, which can be read about in a physics textbook. There is no provable significant correlation between possible patterns in sunlight and chickens crossing a road by the momentum-transfer mechanism.

    Moral: Looking for patterns on the Sun blinds you to real effects from proven mechanisms. Don’t be Chicken, keep looking around lest you become roadkill.

  137. vukcevic says:
    November 13, 2012 at 12:10 pm
    Jurgen says: November 13, 2012 at 11:21 am

    mr. Vukcevic,
    thanks for you comments – it answers some questions I had. It is clear for me now I don’t need to be ashamed the graphs you link to are voodoo science to me as well. But they look beautiful.

  138. Kadaka

    Chicken survives and goes home,wakes up in the next morning to see the same Sun and lets out a morning call,does the same thing the next day and the day after that and so on.The chicken knows something humans do not –

    “The Earth spins on its axis about 366 and 1/4 times each year, but there are only 365 and 1/4 days per year. ” NASA

    http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/ask_astro/answers/970714.html

    There was an old mathematical trick some are familiar with as kids where you prove you have 11 fingers –

    http://best-magic-tricks.blogspot.ie/2006/06/prove-that-you-have-11-fingers.html

    The NASA statement is more or less an astronomical version of this trick and the dismaying part is not that it is easy to spot and correct,it is that readers fail to see the relevance of losing the primary fact in all science – that one rotation and one day keep in step.Maybe the human mind simply refuses to accept that anyone would make such a mistake but I assure you all that they did.

  139. Late to the party and It’s possible a Coriolis effect causes the solar mag fields and the sunspots.
    2pesos.

  140. Leif Svaalgard,

    “No valid critique has been put forward. The article is a progress report on ongoing work. There are two issues:
    1) weighting of Zurich/International SSN. This is now established fact
    2) calibration of GSN. Anybody can duplicate the analysis using published data.

    The actual talk at the conference [with notes] is here
    http://www.leif.org/research/Solar-Activity-Past-Present-and-Future-Notes.pdf

    How does it feel to be the purveyor of Consensus Science???

    We will be eagerly awaiting your next projections!!!

    HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH

  141. From Gerald Kelleher on November 13, 2012 at 3:31 pm:

    Chicken survives and goes home,wakes up in the next morning to see the same Sun and lets out a morning call,does the same thing the next day and the day after that and so on.The chicken knows something humans do not -

    Yes, the chicken knows if it’s a rooster or a hen. I never specified which, so you didn’t know. What hens let out a morning call?

    Your comments have been amusing, sometimes perplexing. Now you’re challenging easily verifiable math. Relative to the stars, the Earth takes 23hrs 56min 4sec to return to the same orientation (23.9344 hrs). You could time this yourself in your own backyard.

    You see 24hrs because relative to the stars, the Sun has moved position relative to the Earth, it takes another 3min 56sec to “catch up”.

    365.25 days/yr * 24hrs/day / 23.9344hrs/rotation
    =366.25 rotations.

    Here on Earth, watching the Sun, there are 365.25 days to the year, it takes 1461 24-hr periods for the Sun to return to the same spot. But during those 365.25 days, the Earth has turned on it axis 366.25 times relative to the stars.

    If you can’t figure out such a basic frame of reference issue, and want to rant about “mistakes” being foisted on the public… Better avoid designing gearing for any machine whatsoever, especially planetary gearing, or you’ll be ranting about mechanical engineers as well.

  142. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    November 13, 2012 at 7:35 pm

    I agree with your averages, but due to Earth’s elliptical orbit, it is a bit more complicated. : -)

    “The shortest days are some 23 hours, 59 minutes and 40 seconds long and occur around 15 September, while the longest days around Christmas are some 24 hours and 3 0 seconds long.
    Watches are based on the convenient assumption that all days in the year are exactly 24 hours long. Sundials take the days as they are, varying in length from 24 hours and 30 seconds in late December and 23 hours 59 minutes and 40 seconds on 15 September as stated above.”

    See:

    http://www.spot-on-sundials.co.uk/noon.html

  143. From Werner Brozek on November 13, 2012 at 9:40 pm:
    I agree with your averages, but due to Earth’s elliptical orbit, it is a bit more complicated. : -)
    And when isn’t it a bit more complicated?

    But just like chemists contemplating chemical reactions based on electron shells, or using the small angle approximation with pendulums, you can stay simple and still get the right answer, that’s correct enough.

  144. From me on November 13, 2012 at 7:35 pm:

    365.25 days/yr * 24hrs/day / 23.9344hrs/rotation
    =366.25 rotations.

    That’s 366.25 rotations/yr.

    Always make sure you have the units right!

    days/yr * hrs/day / hrs/rotation
    (rewrite to multiply)
    => days/yr * hrs/day * rotations/hr
    (cancel days)
    => hrs/yr * rotations/hr
    (cancel hrs)
    => rotations/yr.

  145. Solar Activity – Past, Present, Future

    Prediction of solar activity has a poor track record, but the progression of the current Cycle 24 is in accordance with its behaviour predicted from the evolution of the solar polar fields, so perhaps there is hope.

    The very long cosmic ray record (when calibrated and understood correctly) provides the necessary material for statistical studies of the frequency and features of extremes of solar activity (the ‘500-year floods’). The first order of business is to understand why the variations are discordant compared to other solar indicators the past 400 years. This effort is ongoing and the results are not yet in sight.

    Not really, the sight depends on the personal point of view. Astronomical investigations have shown that cosmic ray records are connected to solar tide functions and moreover because of the linearity of the time function of the ‘Julian Day’ definition it can be used for calibrations of the records. And because of this the connection of solar tide functions terrestrial climate functions as global sea level, global temperatures or the cosmic ray function can be calculated forward in high resolution of month > 1000 years into the future.

    In this graph the astronomic time function is scaled by a factor of 1.15 because it seems that the cosmic ray record time data are not accurate and not linear, and a prediction is plotted for the next 200 years.

    It is clear that the frequency of the sun spots and the modulation frequency of 1/centuries cannot give results of cosmic rays from the sun in high time resolution. But oscillations of ~6.3 cycles per year as well in the sea level data and in the temperature data from satellites fit well with solar tide functions of high frequency objects in the solar system of high density.

    Solar activity means all and nothing. One has to see the stable solar oscillator from its geometry and the frequency modulation and its causes separately. The sun spot time shift or frequency modulation is correlated to the global temperature reconstruction:

    Because it is obvious that solar tide functions of ~6.30 periods per year unto 0.0011 periods per year are visible it seems that not the sunspot activity function is relevant but all the relevant solar tide functions and its frequencies.

    There is a big title claiming ‘Future’, but I have not found any hard predictions. However, it shows the limit of a heliocentric personal point of view rejecting the frequencies in the whole solar system.

    V.

  146. pochas says:
    November 13, 2012 at 12:02 pm
    The electrons get going faster than the protons, hence the electric current and the orthogonal magnetic field. This is the principle behind magnetohydrodynamics.
    From Tokyo [so a bit late]:
    Unfortunately that doesn’t quite work. You cannot easily separate electrons from protons because of their very strong mutual attraction. The Biermann Battery Effect very early on in the history of the Universe did create a magnetic field from nothing, but that process is extremely inefficient and has no significance in the Sun.

  147. @Tallbloke:

    While I found the explanation for the changes to counts very useful, and can clearly see why they were done, I, too, was a bit surprised by the use of present data to modify data from other periods when the present relationships are a moving target.

    Yet it’s clear that two different telescopes were used, so have an effect… Yet if we know that spot contrast is a moving target ‘sometimes’, then it’s not just size, but the ‘contrastiness’ of the lenses too. (Every photographer knows that some lenses preserve contrast better while others are more ‘washed out’).

    So I agree on the “adjust, ok, but keep the old series going too…” I could easily see the relative “k factor” for two telescopes changing with the ‘contrast’ character of sunspots in minimum vs ‘normal’ times.

    With that said: I’ve seen little from Leif to indicate an “agenda”. You may not like his findings, or his reasons, but they sure look like they are based in reasoned decisions, not in an agenda.

    Frankly, while I’m more in your (and Geoff’s) camp of ‘planet caused cycles'; I find your ‘going after’ Leif somewhat offensive… I’m just real tired of the “attack the messenger” ploy as it’s been done to me more than I care to admit.

    So I’d suggest you just ‘make your case’ and stop throwing rocks at the other guy… We’ll figure out which one is best…

    @Geoff Sharp:

    Trying to read any ‘deep meaning’ into the order or number of ‘approved’ comments is a waste of effort. Moderation is somewhat haphazard. That’s just the way it is.

    Some things to consider:

    1) There are multiple moderators. Each has a different ‘style’ and different ‘capacity’.

    2) While WordPress brings up the ‘latest comment first’, some moderators like to do ‘oldest comment first’ so scroll down to the end to start. There can be two moderators, or more, working at the same time who notice that the ‘other one’ is working one area and so changes to ‘the other end’ or even the middle.

    3) Having done that, the other moderator may take a break, or even be done. It can take a while to notice that ‘the other guy’ is no longer working the opposite end of the queue.

    4) Sometimes, when pressed for time, only short and clear comments will be ‘cherry picked’. Why spend 10 minutes on ONE long obscure comment when you can ‘approve’ 20 or 40 short ones instead?

    5) Comments that require ‘think time’ to decide if they meet guidelines may be ‘skipped’ and then you come back to them later. “Snitty” or “grumpy” comments especially as they take a judgment call on tone and content. Similarly those that approach one of the blog guidelines may be left by a ‘junior’ moderator for a more ‘senior’ one to decide. Not all moderators have the same skill level with such decisions. A standing suggestion for new moderators is “if in doubt, leave it for someone else”. So a “Love it!” or a simple “I think ref. foo applies” gets a quick click while a “He’s an {ass | jerk | liar | worse}” may be set aside by junior mods, approved, or given a snip. It all depends.

    6) So a very long, and grumpy comment, with questionable ‘tone’ could sit for hours if only a Junior moderator is looking at it.

    7) Including a lot of links or video may require checking out what they are. That takes time, and can cause a comment to go on the ‘I’ll come back later’ list… while the simple ones get a quick approval. Over some number of links, WordPress automatically puts them in the SPAM queue.

    8) Moderators work sporadically. It is all volunteer. So you may have 3 moderators for 10 minutes, then none for 5 minutes as they all ‘take a break’. Or one guy at 2 am only checking in once every 20 minutes. (Again remember they may be doing FIFO or LIFO or ‘cherry pick short and simple’ or…)

    9) Moderators may take a ‘cycle’ to just dump SPAM, then pick up a few comments from the comment queue (not all) and then hit the fridge… If doing LIFO they may pick up a few from the same guy, while the older comments are ‘off page’ lower down. Eventually to be gotten to when the queue is finally fully emptied or a FIFO preferring Moderator shows up (or the guy just changes ends due to realizing they are not catching up fast enough to just clear the queue.)

    Notice that NONE of these is “filter for friends”.

    BUT,

    10) Some ‘names’ are familiar and you get to know that they never violate the guidelines. They may get a quicker read and easier decision to hit ‘approve’. Other folks may have had a sporadic history of “grumpy to excess” or “words over the line” or just be having an angry tone, so you wonder more about what’s in their links and / or what did they say (some folks even try to sneak things in via indirection and even more complicated tricks). So they take a longer slower read. And maybe even watching ALL of a 1 hour long video they link just to make sure some bad behaviour is not hidden in the end. (On my blog I forgot to do that once or twice and ended up with some video links that were insulting to particular religious memberships despite having warned the poster not to go there… so then a couple of his postings got to sit for a day or two until I had TIME to watch an hour video end to end… There’s only me moderating my blog…) So if you have a long history of ‘playing nice’ it’s more likely that a hurried moderator will just click approve with a quick scan. If the history is more ‘checkered’ then a long slow read. And that slow time demand may put it later in the ‘approval cycle’ after 20 or 30 ‘quick clicks’ get done for maximal efficiency and shortest average wait time.

    11) Some very offensive or generally irritating comments; but not clearly fitting the guideline for rejection, may sit for the blog owner to pass judgment. When that happens is highly dependent on the particular moderator, how comfortable they are that THEY know the guidelines and how to apply them, or how many other comments are demanding attention. So some comments may sit for hours ( or more). Dodgy names and questionable email may require verification. My first posting here sat for about a week. Why? The mods sent an email to me to confirm I was a real person (due to my email address looking a bit bogus). I didn’t read email for a week, so it was that long to respond…

    12) So: It depends a whole lot on the workload and how the comments are stacking up. Somewhat on individual moderator skill and experience levels, and a little bit on ‘style’ in the comments. Note that none of this is about the POV of the comments…

    13) Comments come in in time order but NOT by topic / thread. So a set of comments on this article will have interspersed a slew of comments on all the other active threads. It’s highly disjoint and hard to tell that two folks are ‘discussing’ on the same thread some times. So a comment like “What you said above is garbage” has no context. Hard to even follow the ‘discussion’ most time. So most all moderators are ‘reading for tone’ and not ‘content’. Looking for policy violations and forbidden words more than anything else.

    14) Frankly, moderators often don’t care about the POV or content. It gets old fairly quick. It’s just “Geeze, there’s 100 in the queue! When did that happen? Better knock out a bunch of them and see if I can catch it up…” So while I might be interested in Solar stuff, I could end up looking at a lot of ‘sea ice’ or “funny of the day” or “what Mann did lately” that’s just not very interesting to me, one way or the other. ALL you want to do then is get it sorted into the right bin as fast as possible… as another 10 comments show up …

    In short, you are barking up the wrong tree. There’s no ‘agenda’ in how moderation is done. Frankly, there couldn’t be. A dozen or so moderators self selecting when to moderate, on a 24 x 7 basis spread around the globe? Not going to be that coordinated. Ever. Too many divergent personalities and behaviours. Often working the queue at the same time…

    Heck, my own ‘style’ varies a lot from day to day. Sometimes I’m a FIFO guy. Sometimes I’ll just pick off the newly arriving comments LIFO so that the queue isn’t getting bigger while ‘the other guy’ does batches of FIFO and meets me in the middle. Sometimes I’ll just rip through a 100 comment list and knock out everything under 4 lines long as a fast triage. Or sometimes I’ll pick one or two big fat ones to slowly work through over 10 minutes to clear them out of the way. Or watch a long video clip in a ‘questionable’ one. Depends on my mood and coffee level and how many comments are stacked up and how fast they are arriving and is there another Mod clearly working the queue too or …

    So don’t try to impose any expectation of excessive structured complexity on a chaotic self organizing process… it’ll just drive you crazy ;-)

    [Reply: Very good comments by Mike Smith. Having moderated over 350,000 comments, I can assure you that it is routine and not personal. Like Elvis said, it’s just ‘taking care of business’. — senior mod.]

  148. Dear Moderators,

    Found in: E.M.Smith says:
    November 14, 2012 at 2:19 am

    [Reply: Very good comments by Mike Smith. (snip) — senior mod.]

    Wrong Smith. Someone needs more coffee.

  149. @Kadaka:

    No added coffee needed. The “Senior Mod” just knows that the M in E.M.Smith is Mike…

    I generally go by E.M.Smith for the simple reason that there is one Mike Smith for every 2000 of working population and a couple of OTHER Mike Smiths are already hanging around here…

    But with folks who know me, they may actually use my name…

    E. Mike Smith
    aka EM Smith
    aka Chiefio

  150. Kakada and other readers

    In normal circumstances where reasonable people value their intelligence,they would have quickly identified systemic failure in the ability to argue against one 24 hour day and one rotation of the planet keeping in step,after all,February 29th is both one 24 hour AM/PM cycle and one rotation of the Earth that closes out 4 orbital periods to the nearest rotation,in this case 1461 rotations/days which divided into 4 ,giving an individual orbital circuit who produce 365 1/4 days/rotations for one orbital circuit.

    Systemic failure is by far a greater problem,most here are content to argue over models and inputs but the real; damage is done through the education system as younger students are much more liable to adopt views which are neither good nor right.You probably learned the late 17th century Ra/Dec ideology in high school and never thought about it since,it doesn’t matter that the ideology teaches that there are 1465 rotations in 1461 days/4 years,not even with the strongest effort could you remove what was implanted in your mind and that is why forums like this ,however well meaning,will do more harm than good.

    Human timekeeping began with a flood at a specific point in the orbital period of the planet,in this case the flooding of the Nile.The great astronomers in antiquity noticed that the flood arrived just about the same time Sirius appeared from behind the glare of the central Sun after a disappearance of a few months and it is this annual return of a star that provides the basis of the 1461 day cycle formatted as 3 years of 365 days and 1 year of 366 days.The next major development was the creation of the 24 hour AM/PM cycle in tandem with the Lat/Long system which keeps the Earth turning at a rate of 15 degrees per hour and once in 24 hours,the principles supplied the impetus for creating accurate watches and as a mean to resolve the longitude problem.

    In short,readers are supposed to get into the spirit of planetary dynamics and how they relate to daily and annual effects but that is impossible when you and your colleagues dither around with false references for daily and annual cycles,try to do too much with too little,fail to recognize what modern imaging can really do and bring to terrestrial sciences and a dozen other important issues.

    You are merely repeating the trick of 11 fingers for an audience that most likely never thought much about why the Sun rises and sets or what causes the temperatures to rise and drop daily and annually and those who were exposed to this within the education system learned something as hideous as modeling planetary dynamics using a watch and stellar circumpolar motion,- the 17th century equivalent of the Earth as a greenhouse and human control over the planet’s temperature.

    The issue is not being lost in Universities where everyone gets paid regardless of what side they follow,the damage is done much earlier than that and it begins with the inability to teach children why one 24 hour day keeps in step with one full rotation of the planet hence systemic failure.

    As you are part of the system that conditions you to think is a specific way,it is unlikely that you would see the relevance of losing the primary fact which holds astronomy and terrestrial sciences together therefore it is not strictly a criticism of you,it merely supports Pascal’s view that true intellectual independence is rare.

    .

  151. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:November 13, 2012 at 7:35 pm
    [..] What hens let out a morning call?

    Had a Bantam hen while growing up that used to sit on a tree limb and lay her eggs, which went right to ground, but she crowed from sunup to sunset.

  152. Leif,
    On November 12, 2012, The SESC Sunspot Number (see http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/) was : 188/b>. The sunspot area was “1600” and the Radio Flux 10.7 cm was 144.
    On November 13, 2012, the Sunspot Number was 108, the sunspot area “850” and the Radio Flux was 146.
    Two events are strange looking for me:
    – the sudden decrease (within 24 hours) of the Sunspot Number (- 80) and of the sunspot area (- 750);
    – the great contrast with the stable evolution of the radio flux 10.7.

    Has this something to do with the recent behaviour of the Sun: “Something is happening with the Sun?“?

  153. Rik Gheysens says:
    November 14, 2012 at 10:25 am
    - the sudden decrease (within 24 hours) of the Sunspot Number (- 80) and of the sunspot area (- 750);
    That is clearly an error. SIDC, Locarno, and Catania show no such spike.

  154. lsvalgaard says:
    November 14, 2012 at 10:59 am
    Rik Gheysens says:
    November 14, 2012 at 10:25 am
    - the sudden decrease (within 24 hours) of the Sunspot Number (- 80) and of the sunspot area (- 750);
    That is clearly an error. SIDC, Locarno, and Catania show no such spike.
    The error comes from a strange report from Learmouth, all other stations are ‘normal’

  155. From Gerald Kelleher on November 14, 2012 at 5:03 am:
    In normal circumstances where reasonable people value their intelligence…
    They quickly glance at your long screed and come to the same conclusion the SETI researchers get: This is not a sign of intelligent life.

  156. @Kadaka:

    Don’t forget that Mike Smith was on the shuttle (the first one) when it blew up… as many many Mike Smiths were watching and listening…

    I’ve also had Mike Smith watching TV where Mike Smith the reporter was reporting the death of Mike Smith in a boating accident…

    It’s a strange world being named with the functional equivalent of Anonymous Anonymous…

    One thing you get used to is ‘location specific naming’. Show up somewhere new. Look to see who is already using / claimed what variation of “your” name. So since Mike Smith the weather guy is a ‘known name’ in this context, I look for another variation… So far, using E.M. has been fairly consistently ‘unique’. At least here ;-)

    @Gerald Kelleher:

    I’m presuming I come under “other readers”.

    Your fixation on the difference between Sidereal and Synodic days was amusing the first time it came around. Turning it into a basic failure of (something ill defined in all of us) is awfully ‘fringe’. It’s getting tedious with repetition…

    http://vspages.com/sidereal-vs-synodic-6535/

    Frankly, unless you are an astronomer, it’s substantially irrelevant.

    I first learned it somewhere around high school (physics class, I think). It is a natural and essential consequence of a rotating planet and an orbital period that are not synchronized. THE major effect of it is just that it makes calendar design a bit complex. Basically a PITA.

    Beyond that, the meaning and impact are nearly nil, and for any typical person ARE nil.

    Since the earth also wobbles and has Length Of Day changes and several other minor wanderings of various parameters (due to lots of stirring of the pot by various planetary and potentially solar interactions, and perhaps the occasional giant extinction causing meteor impact) having a 24 hour day that’s “close enough” is a very convenient standard. But if you want to go live in the desert on Sun Time, go right ahead. Though you might want to study up on the Equation Of Time first:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Equation_of_time

    and realize just how much all the bobbing, wobbling, and weaving of the Earth Moon Planet Sun system causes L.O.D. to wander first…

    IMHO, people have been dealing with the Equation Of Time for about 12,000 years (that we know of – first ‘alignment’ monuments are about that old, maybe) and seem to have come to a pretty good solution for day to day use.

    BTW, there are even nice sundials that build in the Equation Of Time so that you can get accurate time of day pretty much year round.

    You might want to visit some of these sites to check out the “state of the art”, both old and new:

    http://sundials.org/index.php/dial-links/sundial-web-links

    http://www.sundials.co.uk/equation.htm

    Has a nice write up of the way sun time and clock time are kept in sync. (BTW, it’s a ‘feature’, not a problem, to have standard hours for regular use…)

    “Sun time” is anchored around the idea that when the sun reaches its highest point (when it crosses the meridian), it is noon and, next day, when the sun again crosses the meridian, it will be noon again. The time which has elapsed between successive noons is sometimes more and sometimes less than 24 hours of clock time. In the middle months of the year, the length of the day is quite close to 24 hours, but around 1 September the days are only some 23 hours, 59 minutes and 41 seconds long while around Christmas, the days are 24 hours and 31 seconds long.

    “Clock time” is anchored around the idea that each day is exactly 24 hours long. This is not actually true, but it is obviously much more convenient to have a “mean sun” which takes exactly 24 hours for each day, since it means that mechanical clocks and watches, and, more recently, electronic ones can be made to measure these exactly equal time intervals.

    Obviously, these small differences in the lengths of “sun days” and “mean days” build up to produce larger differences between “sun time” and “clock time”. These differences reach a peak of just over 14 minutes in mid-February (when “sun time” is slow relative to “clock time”) and just over 16 minutes at the beginning of November (when “sun time” is fast relative to “clock time”). There are also two minor peaks in mid-May (when “sun time” is nearly 4 minutes fast) and in late July (when sun time is just over 6 minutes slow) (These minor peaks have the fortunate effect, in the Northern hemisphere, that the differences are relatively minor during most of the months when there is a reasonable amount of sunshine).

    The differences do not cumulate across the years, because “clock time” has been arranged so that, over the course of a four year cycle including a leap year, the two kinds of time very nearly come back to the same time they started. (The “very nearly” is because “clock time” still has to be adjusted by not having a leap year at the turn of each century, except when the year is exactly divisible by 400, so 1900 was not a leap year, but 2000 will be). Even with this correction, we had an extra second added to “clock time” recently.

    So I think it’s pretty darned obvious that your “hobby horse” topic is neither hidden, nor unknown, nor, dare I say it, particularly important. Unless you are designing sundials…

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sundial

    Has a nice variety of examples. I suggest you use the one with best Equation Of Time features.

    IMHO, it’s this one:

    Yes, that’s a PRECISION sundial…

    (Maybe we could all chip in and buy one for Leif… seems appropriate somehow ;-)

    Now, while discussion of sundial design interests me, and is tangentially related to a posting about the sun, perhaps it would be better to take it to one of the many sundial centric blogs and sites on the internet?

    (I’ve looked at sundials in several contexts on my site, but it is only a minor interest. Partly it grew out of wondering what Stonehenge was – an astronomical observatory and time / length standard NIST if you will – and realizing that a time standard was critical to designing it. You can get the Rod – or perch or pole – from a nice pendulum and a couple of sighting poles that way. I also found it interesting that an Equatorial sundial at the equator is basically a horizontal pole in the air… but doubt that has much to do with the topics here…)

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/01/30/equatorial-equatorial-sundial/

    http://chiefio.wordpress.com/2011/01/30/unifying-the-cubits-the-yard-and-the-rod/

    But do please realize that lack of folks getting excited about your Hobby Horse Topic does not indicate lack of understanding. Much the opposite. It’s just not that interesting and for me at least, it’s a 50 years ago learned as a kid thing…

  157. From Leif Svalgaard on November 14, 2012 at 2:00 am:
    From Tokyo [so a bit late]:

    Dear Leif, please avoid jetting to and from one of your many conferences during a Carrington event. The irony would be too great.

  158. E.M. Smith

    Thank you for affirming what systemic failure looks like as all readers here were asked to do was affirm that the 24 hour AM/PM cycle of February 29th is also one rotation of the planet with all the effects of rotation,once they know that fact they can then divided the total days/rotations into 4 orbital circuits and arrive at 365 1/4 days/rotations for one orbital circuit..If you can’t handle why the temperature rises and falls within a 24 hour period due to one rotation of the Earth there isn’t the slightest chance you can speak in any meaningful way about climate or indeed much else.

    Systemic failure is the worst as it reflects a situation where there is no viable background in place to make the necessary corrections and when a situation arises where readers can’t see the relevance of maintaining the link between the most immediate experience of rotation and its daily effects,they may get a horrible feeling that climate is the least of our concerns.

    You see Smith, when you subscribe to your high school physics course with the belief that the Earth turns 1465 times in 1461 days you have already left physical considerations behind and that is lethal to any conclusion you care to draw between planetary dynamics and terrestrial effects.You are basically the victim of the eleven finger trick because had you followed the proper principles you could easily affirming a round and rotating Earth through the Lat/Long system in tandem with the 24 hour AM/PM system just as all astronomers and innovators once did.

    If it wasn’t so utterly stupid it would be a joke .

  159. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    November 14, 2012 at 12:54 pm
    Dear Leif, please avoid jetting to and from one of your many conferences during a Carrington event. The irony would be too great.
    I check with the planets before every flight. So far all is well :-)

  160. Kadaka

    Apart from poor proofreading,everything else is accurate.

    Systemic failure is rare but it does strike nations and the last great one was the bandwagon that created the holocaust,systemic failure in science and astronomy in particular is global – something that has been going on for a few hundred years and is mostly driven by modeling pseudoscience that began with Newton’s clockwork solar system using the regrettable Ra/Dec ideology.

    The wider community only gets glimpses of how rotten the vicious strain of empiricism is but in this case when they see and your colleagues argue against keeping the day and rotations in step they can be certain that the pseudoscientific modeling is behind it.

  161. E.M Smith

    I would imagine a student can read the rotation of the Earth out of that graph and would probably inform you that the fluctuations within a 24 hour period do not fall out of step with one rotation.

    Still believe there are 1465 rotations in 1461 days and then go on to talk about temperature fluctuations ?.What a nightmare for everyone !.

  162. Gerald Kelleher says:

    If it wasn’t so utterly stupid it would be a joke .

    Well, at least that’s one thing we can agree on, but probably not in the way you expect… ;-)

    It would have been helpful had you bothered to look at the links provided and discover just how much I’m interested in, and aware of, motion of the earth vs the stars and sun.

    Like I said, there’s not a lot of great significance to synoptic vs sidereal unless you are making clocks or calendars. That we do a different number of rotations relative to the stars than relative to the star we orbit (where the orbital movement changes the count by one) is a fundamental artifact of geometry, not much more to be said about it. Usually grasped inside 30 seconds by kids.

    But you go ahead and fixate. Just really really consider not doing it here. You are displaying aspects of either being irrationally fixated, or simply a poor Troll. *Looking to stir things up with mindless distractions”. If you get flagged as a Troll, well, ask the moderators…

    Personally, I see no more reason to ‘engage’ on the topic. All I cared about was the sundial connection, and it’s not ‘appropriate’ to this thread anyway.

    I’ll leave folks with this:

    Take a few stones, pick an open place, and stand in the sun, looking at your shadow. Place one stone at your feet (so you know where to stand next time). Each hour, place one stone at the end of your shadow. Congratulations, you are now a sundial:

    Personally, I like doing this with a pot of flowers for the hour markers. If you get really ‘into it’ you can plant an angled curve of flowers (as in the precision example above) to allow for the Equation Of Time and keep the sundial accurate in all seasons. Makes it incredibly visible how the earth moves, what the sun does, and even gives you an answer to the question “Does anybody really know what time it is?”

    If really really into it, use a different flower that blooms in the appropriate quarter so you always just read whatever flowers are in bloom ;-)

    (To get it right, though, you really need to understand the equation of time and how things change at your latitude. Or just set out pots on the solstices and equinoxes and interpolate for ‘close enough’. Maybe I ought to design sundials for a living ;-)

  163. Gerald Kelleher says:
    November 14, 2012 at 2:03 pm
    Still believe there are 1465 rotations in 1461 days and then go on to talk about temperature fluctuations ?.What a nightmare for everyone !.
    I’m at a loss as to what your problem is. The rotation period of the Earth with respect to the stars is 23h 56m 4.09s and does not vary [to that precision] through the year. This has been known for centuries. A ‘day’ is not the rotation period of the Earth, but is the time between successive ‘high noons’ and is longer than the rotation period because the Earth itself moves around the Sun. The temperature changes obviously go with the ‘day’.

  164. From Gerald Kelleher on November 14, 2012 at 1:41 pm:

    You see Smith, when you subscribe to your high school physics course with the belief that the Earth turns 1465 times in 1461 days you have already left physical considerations behind and that is lethal to any conclusion you care to draw between planetary dynamics and terrestrial effects.

    But here you have fallen for the common conception of the Earth spinning like a ball on a rod. If invoking planetary dynamics, the major gravitational effect from rotation is the spinning of the Earth/Moon system around their barycenter, so that period should be considered.

    Another rotational period that can be important is the Earth’s surface relative to the core. As seen in this 2005 work, the solid inner core is rotating faster, by about 0.3 to 0.5 degrees a year. It doesn’t seem like much, but that represents an enormous amount of angular momentum thus “stored” kinetic energy. Plus the spinning inner core is thought to be the source of Earth’s magnetic field, which is vital for protecting life on Earth from dangerous radiation from space.

    But back around 1996 the quoted rate was 3 degrees a year.

    And now new research shows the inner core hardly moves at all. From a 2011 paper, the new established rate is only about one degree every million years. This has major implications, such as how the Earth can even have such a relatively strong magnetic field with the dynamo turning this slowly. It also indicates the “liquid” inner core is very viscous.

    (BTW this piece trumpets how it is still proven the solid inner core rotates faster, as if it matters all that much at that rate.)

    Meanwhile, the physical considerations of exactly how fast the surface turns in relation to the Sun or the stars and resulting conclusions on planetary dynamics, are meaningless, as that period has nothing to do with the effects of Earth on other planets or the Sun. For terrestrial effects, outside of the unnatural human desire for perfection in timekeeping, it is also meaningless.

  165. E.M Smith

    Fluctuations in Arctic sea ice quantities arise from a single orbital cause as the polar coordinates,acting like a beacon for the orbital behavior of the planet ,turn in a circle/cycle to the central Sun.This requires
    that axial precession goes from a long term axial trait to an annual orbital trait and readers can read this
    polar cycle directly out of observations –

    The Earth has two separate rotations to the central Sun,one diurnal and the other rotation a component of its orbital motion,the combination of these rotations causes the known observations that each natural noon AM/PM cycle is different to the next .Because daily and orbital motions are separate,the averaging process which creates the average 24 hour day out of the natural noon equality allows this average to substitute for constant rotation so that as each 24 hour day elapses into the next 24 hour day,so too is rotation keep in sync.I don;t expect readers to become instantly familiar with the ins and outs of working timekeeping into the dual dynamics of the planet but the least they can do is affirm that February 29th is both a 24 hour cycle and one rotation as an anchor for understanding everything else.

    For a group so concerned with Arctic sea ice fluctuations,it is quite a sight to see opposition to the polar day/night cycle and its orbital cause as the polar coordinates are carried around in a circle to the central Sun.The Earth has two day/night cycles with two separate causes,when mixed at lower latitudes with daily rotation,we call this combination the ‘seasons’ but at the North/South poles,the orbital cycle is experienced in splendid isolation where the great orbital temperature fluctuation between highs and lows take an entire year/orbital circuit.

    Forget sundials, this is the 21st century and people now live at the South pole where they can experience the orbital effect of the Earth and daily rotational effects diminish,if you wish me to give you a lesson on what you are doing wrong with sundials I can do so but for everyone else,the sequential images of Uranus explain so much in terms of climate,the seasons,why natural noon cycles vary and especially how to define climate properly.

  166. Isvalgaard

    Many readers have enough common sense to identify that the central problem with modeling pseudoscience is that the scenarios exist only inside the heads of modelers and their computers and there is an antecedent to all this in the late 17th century when they tried to model planetary dynamics directly using mechanical means,in this case -watches.

    The systemic failure is arriving at a conclusion and trying to get observations to fit that conclusion even though physical considerations should intervene and especially the ability to appeal to immediate experience to affirm or reject assertions.You are only interested in justifying what the watch is telling you rather than taking a wider view what within a 24 hour period,the temperature will rise and fall in response to one rotation and then move on to the next major fluctuation which is due to the orbital cycle.

    I firmly believe that any reader can easily understand and explain why Arctic sea levels are increasing presently as the polar coordinates are carried around in a circle and away from solar radiation by just dwelling for a few moments on the sequence of images of Uranus.I know you can’t do it with the right ascension ideology as it is a contrived system.

  167. Kadaka

    Your assertions are all over the place as are your conclusions.

    In 2005 when nobody was talking about rotation and plate tectonics,I was working on combining the planet’s 26 mile spherical deviation with plate tectonics using the already observed mechanism of differential rotation in all rotating celestial objects with exposed fluid compositions.

    As you see,I am a great fan of planetary comparisons and in this case I look at Venus which is the same size as the Earth but with entirely different rotational characteristics.Venus has no spherical deviation and no geological activity outside volcanism while the Earth has a 26 mile spherical deviation and a very active surface crust due to its rotational characteristics.Another issue is geomagnetism ,Venus shows little reaction to CME ‘s due to its weak geomagnetic signatures whereas the Earth is well protected –

    The poor guys in the mid 19th century wanted to consider the electromagnetic properties of the Sun illuminating the Earth but they loved the clockwork solar system of Flamsteed/Newton too much which forbids discussing an intermediate agency between light and heat from the Sun to the Earth and so it remains to this day.I could go into great detail but not right now.

    Again,systemic failure and to avoid its continuation requires a different type of investigator – one who actually is comfortable with 21st century technology and the ability to move information around while keeping an eye on physical considerations.

    Apologizes for the extremely poor proofreading and I don’t blame readers for giving up on my posts.

  168. Anthony; E.M.Smith’s post above (November 14, 2012 at 2:19 am) on moderation could perhaps be edited to it’s comments on moderation and be stored so that your moderators could simply link to it when questions and accusations arise from individual commentors believing they are being done down and punished.

    [Reply: Good suggestion, thanks. — mod.]

  169. Having presented sequential imaging which clearly shows that Arctic sea ice fluctuations are a consequence of the orbital behavior of the Earth,insofar as the polar coordinates are carried around in a circle to the central Sun ,the issue of moderation comes up again as it did in Nature magazine last week –

    “The following post you wrote on the Nature News website has been hidden by the moderator in accordance with our terms and conditions”. -Nature News editors

    Daily temperature fluctuations and its cause is separate to the annual temperature fluctuation and its orbital cause hence readers can,for the first time,understand the orbital dynamic behind Arctic sea ice fluctuations come from – sad but unfortunately true.

    E.M Smith

    I am sure in your world that you place two stones on the ground and hey presto – you have a sundial however the process which required the conversion of natural noon AM/PM into 24 hour AM/PM required determining a meridian line.I could probably explain how John Harrison had to create an Equation of Time table and how it effects Christian Huygens founding principles but the chances are you just can’t keep up –

    “Draw a Meridian line upon a floor (the manner of doing which is sufficiently known; and note, that the utmost exactness herein is not necessary:) and then hang two plummets, each by a small thread or wire, directly over the said Meridian, at the distance of some 2. feet or more one from the other, as the smallness of the thread will admit. When the middle of the Sun (the Eye being placed so, as to bring both the threads into one line) appears to be in the same line exactly ,you are then immediately to set the Watch, not precisely to the hour of 12. but by so much less, as is the Aequation of the day by the Table”
    Christian Huygens.

    This is the basis of the 24 hour AM/PM cycle in tandem with the Lat/Long system that you wish moderated out of existence as it contains the primary facts of a round and rotating Earth.

  170. Figure 8 [left]: Heliospheric magnetic field strength at Earth inferred from the cosmic ray record [Steinhilber et al., 2010].

    The data Steinhilber et al. have published in 2010 are delta TSI values over a long time range. It can be compared with the GISP 2 data of the inverse dO18 isotope function in general.

    For the time span in years from -2500 to -500 I have plotted both curves and there is a match.

    It was discussed tonight in WUWT TV with Dr. Sebastian Lüning whether there is an idea about the nature of the global Bond climate cycle of ~1000 years or whether it is a phantom.

    The simple answer is that this main frequency of 1/913.5 years^-1 can be related to the outer tide functions of couples in the solar system:

    This holds not only for these 2000 years but also for ~10000 years back.

    It is clear that with the knowledge of this solar tide geometry the climate can be predicted 1000 years ahead in high resolution:

    V.

  171. the way that I see it, it is mainly about Jupiter. But Saturn+Earth+Venus (and Mercury) has additional and important effect.
    The main mechanism is probably tides (from the tidal planets Jupiter, Venus, Earth and Mercury – in that order). AND the variation of solar distance to barycenter (change in wobble) is probably influencing the tidal effect. My hypothesis is that the changing wobble has a deforming-effect that enhances the tidal effect.
    So tidal forces are exchanged from Jupiter+Venus+Earth, and is enhanced when the change in wobble is greater than average (depending on the angle between Jupiter and Saturn).

    The only plausible cause of “energy exchange” with planets is the tidal effect. The challenge is to explain why a change in wobble can enhance the tide (some kind of sentrifugal effect?).

    I think there is a possible unifying theory here, that can put all three main cycles of 10, 11 and 12 years into one equation.

    All other planets are insignificant, except Uranus+Neptun when they are near conjunct.

  172. A simple question for the moderators.

    Do Mosher’s comments require approval and if so does he have the ability to approve.

    [All comments by everybody appear in the queue that the moderators review. Mod]

    • “A simple question for the moderators.

      Do Mosher’s comments require approval and if so does he have the ability to approve.

      [All comments by everybody appear in the queue that the moderators review. Mod]. ”

      A simple question completely sidestepped.

      Question
      Do Mosher’s comments require approval.
      Answer
      All comments by everybody appear in the queue that the moderators review.
      Question
      Does he have the ability to approve.
      Answer
      All comments by everybody appear in the queue that the moderators review.

      Take some advice moderator, if you don’t want to answer a question say so. Don’t play games. Some of your audience is probably smarter than you.

      Then there are people like me!! HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

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