Is the Sun getting close to minimal activity?

There has been a interesting news today from BBC News about the current quiet that is taking place in our Sun. It is already known that our Sun is a variable star, but what type of variable star our Sun is has not yet been established. The most common idea [Solar Dynamics Observatory: The ‘Variable Sun’ Mission] is that our Sun has a variability that is connected to the 11 hour sunspot cycle. I don’t think it has been considered that our Sun might be a variable star that has a cycle of 400 years, with high and lows in taking place during that period. With the last lowest point taking place during the Maunder Minimum and possibly some 400 years before that (I don’t have that confirmed, it is just an idea). It is also possible that this cycle in the Sun is more variable than that and happens at random times, but I don’t have much faith in such this. At least until proven otherwise.

If this is a cycle of high and lows that last 400 years (this has not yet been proven by scientists, so this is just a speculation on my part) cycles it means that we are currently about to enter a new low that is going to last around 70 years, we are currently just seeing the start of this minimal period in the Sun. As was the case last time this type of low did happen in the Sun it took few decades to properly start. While this remains unconfirmed it remains just an idea that I am having. What we do know however is that our Sun is getting less active in terms of sunspot activity over the past few years. I do think this trend is going to continue for the next 70 or so years. I might be wrong about this, but I based my view on best earlier data that I have available to me. For the next few decades the winters in both Europe and the U.S are going to get really cold and long. Based on earlier historical data about what happens to the weather once there are few to no sunspots at all on the Sun.

BBC News coverage of the missing sunspots.


Is our Sun falling silent?
(BBC News)

Solar storm and solar radiation storm under way

During the night there was an M9 solar flare on the sun. This is almost an X-flare according to spacewatch.com. There is also an solar radiation storm heading it’s way to Earth at this moment. It is expected to be S3 in size. But that means that computer might reboot, mobile phones might get weaker signals and so on. A CME is expected to hit Earth tomorrow around 14:18 UTC.

More information on this can be found on Spaceweather.com. Both the progress of this solar radiation storm and updates on the CME. Solar storm weather scales can be viewed here.

A X1.4 solar far happened yesterday (22. September 2011)

According to Spaceweather.com there was a X1.4 solar flare yesterday. The CME is going to miss Earth magnetic field. But might just glance it on the edge. The X1.4 solar flare did peak around 11:00 UTC yesterday.

This solar flare was created by a new large sunspot that is just coming over the Sun eastern limb. It should be in direct view from Earth in about two to three days time I would think.