Tag Archives: Marshall

The solar scientists change their prediction again

Today, with little fanfare, the solar scientists at the Marshall Space Flight Center adjusted slightly downward their prediction for the upcoming solar maximum, from a sunspot number of 73 down to 72. This was the fourth month in a row that they have revised their prediction.

The Marshall scientists do not archive their predictions, which I suspect is a convenient way of preventing people from noticing how much they change them. I however like to archive these revisions. Below is a full list of their changes during the past two years:
» Read more

Solar scientists at the Marshall Space Flight Center have once again adjusted their prediction for the upcoming solar maximum.

Solar scientists at the Marshall Space Flight Center have once again adjusted their prediction for the upcoming solar maximum.

The current prediction for Sunspot Cycle 24 gives a smoothed sunspot number maximum of about 70 in May of 2013. We are currently over two and a half years into Cycle 24. Five out of the last six months with average daily sunspot numbers above 40 has raised the predicted maximum above the 64.2 for the Cycle 14 maximum in 1907. This predicted size still make this the smallest sunspot cycle in over 100 years.

This new prediction is slightly higher than their prediction of 63 from two weeks ago. As they note, even this new number leaves us with a very weak solar maximum.

The Sun calms down in December

It’s that time again! As I do every month, it’s time to post Space Weather Prediction Center’s monthly updated graph showing the Sun’s solar cycle sunspot activity. The graph itself can be seen below the fold.

After five months of quickly increasing sunspot activity, the Sun in December finally took a rest, with the sunspot numbers dropping down to almost exactly the solar activity scientists had expected at this time, according to their May 2009 prediction. Interestingly, this might be the first time since I began tracking the solar cycle in 2008 that the prediction actually matched that month’s activity.
» Read more