The sun’s weak maximum continues

For many reasons, mostly political but partly ethical, I do not use Google, Facebook, Twitter. They practice corrupt business policies, while targeting conservative websites for censoring, facts repeatedly confirmed by news stories and by my sense that Facebook has taken action to prevent my readers from recommending Behind the Black to their friends.
Thus, I must have your direct support to keep this webpage alive. Not only does the money pay the bills, it gives me the freedom to speak honestly about science and culture, instead of being forced to write it as others demand.


Please consider donating by giving either a one-time contribution or a regular subscription, as outlined in the tip jar below.


Regular readers can support Behind The Black with a contribution via paypal:

Or with a subscription with regular donations from your Paypal or credit card account:

If Paypal doesn't work for you, you can support Behind The Black directly by sending your donation by check, payable to Robert Zimmerman, to
Behind The Black
c/o Robert Zimmerman
P.O.Box 1262
Cortaro, AZ 85652


You can also support me by buying one of my books, as noted in the boxes interspersed throughout the webpage. And if you buy the books through the ebookit links, I get a larger cut and I get it sooner.

The monthly graph from NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center of the Sun’s solar cycle sunspot activity is out and I have posted it below. Though activity increased for the second month in a row, the totals are still below the activity levels of March and April 2011.

I am beginning to think that I sound like a broken record. This monthly graph once again suggests that the next solar maximum will be weak, possibly weaker than the most up-to-date predictions for the next solar maximum. And even if that prediction is correct, the data continues to point towards a quieter Sun, with the likelihood of a long period of no sunspots beginning in the next decade.

Based on past history, the consequences of a long Maunder-type minimum, where there are no sunspots for decades, should be very profound. Every time the Sun has gone this quiet in the past, the Earth’s climate has cooled. Furthermore, new results just released add weight to this conclusion. A less active Sun allows more intergalactic cosmic rays to hit the atmosphere, and the CLOUD experiment at CERN strongly suggests that the higher rate of cosmic rays could in turn increase the atmosphere’s cloudiness, thereby reflecting more light and energy and making the Earth colder.

The sunspot graph for August 2011


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *