Monday, December 2, 2013

New paper predicts Dalton-like minimum in solar activity around 2050

A paper published today in Advances in Space Research predicts that if the current lull in solar activity "endures in the 21st century the Sun shall enter a Dalton-like grand minimum. It was a period of global cooling."

The author uses a new "empirical technique invoking three-cycle quasi-periodicity (TCQP) in Ap index" of solar geomagnetic activity to predict sunspot activity several years in advance.

The author notes solar activity was particularly active during the latter 20th century, stating, "the Sun has emerged from a Grand Maximum, which includes solar cycle 19, the most active solar cycle in the last 400 years. Earth was cooler in Grand Minima. The trend line indicates we have entered a period of low solar activity."

Indeed, the added red horizontal lines on the author's Annual Mean Sunspot Numbers show 50-year mean solar activity was at the highest levels of the past 300 years during the latter half of the 20th century:

Added red horizontal lines show 50-year mean sunspot numbers were highest during the solar Grand Maximum in the latter half of the 20th century. DM= Dalton Minimum of solar activity during the Little Ice Age.

Related: The Sun explains 95% of climate change over the past 400 years.

An empirical approach to predicting the key parameters for a sunspot number cycle

  • University of New Mexico, Department of Physics & Astronomy, MSC07 4220, Albuquerque, NM 87131, USA


The common methodologies used to predict the smooth sunspot number (SSN) at peak (Rmax) and the rise time (Tr) for a cycle are noted. The estimates based on geomagnetic precursors give the best prediction of Rmax for five SSN cycles (20-24). In particular, an empirical technique invoking three-cycle quasi-periodicity (TCQP) in Ap index has made accurate predictions of Rmax and Tr for two consecutive SSN cycles (23 and 24). The dynamo theories are unable to account for TCQP. If it endures in the 21st century the Sun shall enter a Dalton-like grand minimum. It was a period of global cooling. The current status of the ascending phase of cycle 24 is described and the delayed reversal of the solar polar field reversal in the southern hemisphere in September 2013 is noted.

Slides from a presentation on this paper by the author:



  1. Dr Norman Page
    • 6 hours ago

    The CAGW projections of the IPCC - models and all the impact studies which derive from them are based on specifically structurally flawed and inherently useless models. They deserve no place in any serious discussion of future climate trends and represent an enormous waste of time and money. As a basis for public policy their forecasts are grossly in error and therefore worse than useless.
    How then can we predict the future of a constantly changing climate? A new forecasting paradigmis required. It is important to note that it in order to make transparent and likely skillful forecasts it is not necessary to understand or quantify the interactions of the large number of interacting and quasi- independent physical
    processes and variables which produce the state of the climate system as a whole as represented by the temperature metric.
    A simple rational approach to climate forecasting based on common sense and Quasi Repetitive- Quasi Cyclic Patterns has been developed on several posts at
    There has been no net warming for 16 years indeed the earth has been in a cooling trend since 2003 which will continue until about 2035 and perhaps for hundreds of years beyond that. For estimates of the timing and amount of the coming cooling see the link above. Here is a summary of the conclusions.
    "I have combined the PDO, ,Millennial cycle and neutron trends to estimate the timing and extent of the coming cooling in both the Northern Hemisphere and Globally.
    Here are the conclusions of those posts.
    1/22/13 (NH)
    1) The millennial peak is sharp - perhaps 18 years +/-. We have now had 16 years since 1997 with no net warming - and so might expect a sharp drop in a year or two - 2014/16 -with a net cooling by 2035 of about 0.35.Within that time frame however there could well be some exceptional years with NH temperatures +/- 0.25 degrees colder than that.
    2) The cooling gradient might be fairly steep down to the Oort minimum equivalent which would occur about 2100. (about 1100 on Fig 5) ( Fig 3 here) with a total cooling in 2100 from the present estimated at about 1.2 +/-
    3) From 2100 on through the Wolf and Sporer minima equivalents with intervening highs to the Maunder Minimum equivalent which could occur from about 2600 - 2700 a further net cooling of about 0.7 degrees could occur for a total drop of 1.9 +/- degrees
    4)The time frame for the significant cooling in 2014 - 16 is strengthened by recent developments already seen in solar activity. With a time lag of about 12 years between the solar driver proxy and climate we should see the effects of the sharp drop in the Ap Index which took place in 2004/5 in 2016-17.

    4/02/13 ( Global)

    1 Significant temperature drop at about 2016-17
    2 Possible unusual cold snap 2021-22
    3 Built in cooling trend until at least 2024
    4 Temperature Hadsst3 moving average anomaly 2035 - 0.15
    5 Temperature Hadsst3 moving average anomaly 2100 - 0.5
    6 General Conclusion - by 2100 all the 20th century temperature rise will have been reversed,
    7 By 2650 earth could possibly be back to the depths of the little ice age.
    8 The effect of increasing CO2 emissions will be minor but beneficial - they may slightly ameliorate the forecast cooling and help maintain crop yields .
    9 Warning !! There are some signs in the Livingston and Penn Solar data that a sudden drop to the Maunder Minimum Little Ice Age temperatures could be imminent - with a much more rapid and economically disruptive cooling than that forecast above which may turn out to be a best case scenario

  2. Hi - I am a non-climate scientist but do have a PhD in a numerate subject and I have been studying both the behaviour of the QBO and solar Ap and I more or less concur with Dr Page's conclusions.