Solar Cycle 24 peaked? The experimentum crucis begins.

The WSO Polar field strengths – early indicators of solar maximums and minimums – have dived towards zero recently, indicating that its all down from here for solar cycle 24.

Polar field reversals can occur within a year of sunspot maximum, but cycle 24 has been so insipid, it would not be surprising if the maximum sunspot number fails to reach the NOAA predicted peak of 90 spots per month, and get no higher than the current 60 spots per month.

The peak in solar intensity was predicted for early 2013, so this would be early, and may be another indication that we are in for a long period of subdued solar cycles.

A prolonged decline in solar output will provide the first crucial experiment to distinguish the accumulation theory of solar driven temperature change, and the AGW theory of CO2 driven temperature change. The accumulation theory predicts global temperature will decline as solar activity falls below its long-term average of around 50 sunspots per month. The AGW theory predicts that temperature will continue to increase as CO2 increases, with little effect from the solar cycle.

An experimentum crucis is considered necessary for a particular hypothesis or theory to be considered an established part of the body of scientific knowledge. A given theory, such as AGW, while in accordance with known data but has not yet produced a critical experiment is typically considered unworthy of full scientific confidence.

Prior to this moment, BOTH solar intensity was generally above its long term average, AND greenhouse gases were increasing. BOTH of these factors could explain generally rising global temperature in the last 50 years. However, now that one factor, solar intensity, is starting to decline and the other, CO2, continues to increase, their effects are in opposition, and the causative factor will become decisive.

For more information see WUWT’s Solar Reference page.

  • Henry Justice

    Well, let’s see what the next couple of months look like.  If the decline continues, then Solar Cycle 24 has already peaked. But, wait, mother nature may disagree.  It may bottom out some more, then rise like a phoenix from the ashes. 

  • David L. Hagen

    David S.
    Agree in principle on the experimentum crucis with solar declining vs CO2 increasing.

    Recommend basing comparisons on other parameters than sunspots as the magnetic field declines below 1500 G, fewer “sunspots” are even visible. See:

    DECREASING SUNSPOT MAGNETIC FIELDS EXPLAIN UNIQUE 10.7 cm RADIO FLUX, The
    Astrophysical Journal Letters,
    757:L8 (4pp), 2012 September 20 Livingston,
    Penn, & Svalgaard http://www.leif.org/research/apjl2012-Liv-Penn-Svalg.pdf

    “a
    detailed fit to the relation between the magnetic field strength and
    the sunspot intensity (relative to the quiet Sun) shows that for magnetic
    fields below about 1500 G (1463 ± 13.3
    G) a sunspot would
    have the same intensity as the surrounding Sun (Schad &Penn
    2010)
    . . .only fields above 1500 G form dark spots.”

    Suggest exploring Leif’s presentations/papers for other adjustments to the sunspot number based in differing viewers and methods. e.g.

    Solar Activity, Past, Present & Future
    http://www.leif.org/research/Solar-Activity-Past-Present-and-Future-Notes.pdf

  • John Jauregui

    CO2???    Let me put this as simply as I can.  Imagine a large class jar filled with about 10,000 white marbles  –  9996 to be exact.  These white marbles represent our atmosphere without CO2.  Now pull 4 black “CO2″ marbles out of your pocket and toss them into the jar.  Now look at the jar and let this visual ratio sink in.  4 in 10,000.  That’s the concentration of CO2 in our atmosphere.   Not right you say!  Okay, get a much bigger glass jar (10 times to be exact) and fill it with 99960 white marbles and 40 black marbles.  The ratio remains the same, but the numbers are getting so large it’s harder to get a “feel” for the scale.  Now fill a much larger glass jar with 999600 white marbles and 400 black marbles.  The ratio remains the same but now we are at the (horrifying) Al Gore advertised 400 parts per million (PPM).   In all cases the percentage of CO2 is .04%.  By any definition CO2 is an infinitesimal atmospheric trace gas.  It’s minimum concentration is barely able to maintain photosynthesis which feeds us and simply stops when the ration declines to 2 in 10,000.  The simple reality is that nothing has done more to “GREEN” our planet in the past few decades than slightly elevated CO2 (planet food) in the presence of moderate warming brought about by the most significant solar grand maximum in a thousand years.  The bad news is the good news is over and humans richly deserve what’s on its way for their gullibility in believing criminals like Gore and Hansen.

    • Rwtl

      Now take that jar with 1 million marbles (40 black) and add 20 red marbles to signify arsenic pentaflouride.

      It’s only half as much as the co2. Do us a favour and breathe it in!

      Even a small amount if something can have big consequences

      • Rwtl

        Sorry I was out by a factor of 10. The LC50 (concentration that kills 50%) is 20 ppm, so it’s either: 2 red to 40 black. Or 20 red to 400 black