The Sun continues to produce very few sunspots. The Sun, as of this writing, has gone 51 days without an observable spot. This ranks as the 4th longest stretch without a sunspot since 1849. The Sun is currently coming out of solar minimum, that time in the Sun’s eleven year cycle when it produces very few sunspots.



This particular solar minimum has lasted so long, that our current Sun cycle has lasted nearly 13 years instead of the average of 11. Historically, long solar cycles have attributed to cooler temperatures on Earth, which has been the case the past few years as planetary average temperatures have been declining slightly. As far back as 1801, William Herschel, the discoverer of Uranus, found a correlation between wheat prices and the number of sun spots.


New research published just last week may begin to give us a better understanding of the cause and effect relationship of this phenomenon.

UPDATE:  There may have been a small spot on the Sun last evening ending the streak at 51 days.

4 Responses

  1. robert sobczak

    How does this differ from atmospheric warming … and does it mean we’re in for trouble when sun spot cycles get back into full bloom?

  2. Daryl Ritchison

    Atmospheric warming too me would be the same thing. Global average temperatures (a very poor indicator btw to measure global warming or cooling) vary monthly and yearly and significantly at times. When and if the sun get’s going again…. I think with recent climatic shifts in the Pacific and Atlantic oceans global mean temperatures will very likely not exceed late 1990s or 1930s temperatures anytime soon. I personally see global temperatures being “cool” for the next 10 to 20 years, similar to the temperatures seen in the 1960s and 1970s.

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