Solar Cycle 24 has officially started

What a day! First a major storm whacks the west coast, now we have the official start of solar cycle 24. Solar physicists have been waiting for the appearance of a reversed-polarity sunspot to signal the start of the next solar cycle. The signal for the start of a new cycle is sighting a particular…

Today’s storm is a 9.0

A meteorologist friend of mine, Jan Null, has been keeping tabs on Winter Storms for some time. He’s developed something called the Bay Area Storm Index (BASI) which he uses to calculate the intensity of the storm by combining susatined wind, peak gusts, and rain totals. By his reckoning, this storm today rates a 9.0 on…

Mother Nature Whacks West Coast

Click image for latest animation UPDATE: For a high resolution still image of this “beautiful” storm click this link: pacific_nhemi_01-04-08_1430utc.jpg The Friday storm moving into California is one of the strongest I’ve seen in about five years. The record rainfall for today in Chico, CA was 2.66 inches in 2002. The important thing to remember is…