Using a new computer model of the Sun, scientists have begun work on a groundbreaking forecast of the next cycle of sunspots. Mausumi Dikpati of the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) announced new research leading to an improved forecast of cycle 24 at the annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) in Denver. Predicting features of the solar cycle may help society anticipate sunspots and associated solar storms, which can disrupt communications and power systems and expose astronauts to high amounts of radiation.
A map of observed solar magnetic fields from the National Solar Observatory (top) correlates closely with a new NCAR model. Both images show the longitudinal averages of the fields. NCAR scientists are using the Predictive Flux-transport Dynamo Model to make predictions about solar cycle 24, which will probably begin about 2007 to 2008. (Image courtesy Mausumi Dikpati, Giuliana de Toma, Peter Gilman, and Oran White, all of NCAR; and Charles Arge of CU-Boulder and NOAA.)
The forecast draws on research by scientists at NCARs High Altitude Observatory indicating that the evolution of sunspots is caused by a current of plasma, or electrified gas, that circulates between the Suns equator and its poles over a number of years. The forecasters believe the next solar cycle will begin in 2007 to 2008 if the plasma circulation, which has slowed down during the present solar cycle, continues to decelerate. That would mean cycle 24 would begin about a half-year later than if the cycles followed the standard 11-year span.
“We will spend the next several months incorporating additional plasma flow data into our model to determine the rising pattern of cycle 24,” explains Dikpati, a leader of the research team. “Our focus will be on when the cycle is likely to reach maximum and cause geomagnetic storms in Earth’s atmosphere.”
Anatta | UCAR
Engineering team images tiny quasicrystals as they form
18.08.2017 | Cornell University
Astrophysicists explain the mysterious behavior of cosmic rays
18.08.2017 | Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology
Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.
As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...
Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.
Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...
For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.
While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...
An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.
The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...
A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.
Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...
16.08.2017 | Event News
04.08.2017 | Event News
26.07.2017 | Event News
18.08.2017 | Life Sciences
18.08.2017 | Physics and Astronomy
18.08.2017 | Materials Sciences