What the latest lull in sunspots means for our weather | Climate Realists
Posted by SteveB on May 4, 2009
By CHARLES McMAHON
A continuing low in sunspot activity on the sun’s surface has scientists speculating on whether the lull will continue, and if it extends for decades, as has happened in the past, whether the planet would see another “Little Ice Age.”
Centuries of observations have shown that sunspot activity goes through a 22-year cycle, with an 11-year period of sunspot activity from greatest to least, then an ascent to another peak.
The sun currently is in an 11-year valley, or solar minimum. However, it seems to be idling there, rather than ticking back upward. The least active stage for sunspots was in August 2008, which led scientists to expect an uptick by March of this year — but it hasn’t yet occurred.