by Mitch Battros - Earth Changes MediaJanuary 22nd, 2014
We should give credit to
NASA on this one. Their team predicted Solar Cycle 24's reversal would
occur on or around December 31st. Given the variables, I would say they
nailed it. The two most highly visible signs are a spike in solar
activity and most if not all sunspots would occur on the Sun's southern
the first week in January, sunspot region 1944 produced one X-class
flare and seven M-class flares. It is now determined region 1944 was the
largest sunspot group of Cycle 24. We have to go back to July 2004
(previous Cycle 23) to find a significantly bigger group which was
sunspot region 0652.
was not an easy task to determine the measurements of region 1944 to be
compared to previous largest events. The Sun being a round sphere, a
sunspot near the limb looks a lot smaller than an equally sized sunspot
near the disk's center. Hence, small deviations in the measurements may
result in a very different outcome for the sunspot area.
all these reasons, the area data can differ substantially from one
source to the other. Applying this consistently on SDO/HMI imagery, it
turns out that the maximum area for NOAA 1944 (Jan. 7th 2014) seems to
be slightly larger than that of the previous runner-ups…sunspot region
1339 which occurred on Nov. 3rd 2011 and region 1520 occurring July 10th
2012 showing a 1% to 4% increase over the latter.
to the Jan. 7th 2014 X1-flare, the proton flux was already elevated due
to a flare from NOAA 1936 which had rounded the west solar limb 2 days
before. As a result of combined charged particle clouds, the proton flux
increased making it the strongest event since the May 22-24th 2013
for continued extreme weather events and fluctuations. This could come
again as jet streams and ocean currents shift dropping temperatures to
perhaps near record lows in the northern hemisphere.
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