Tuesday, March 26, 2013

30-Day Sunspot Cycle in Turmoil

The 30 Day sunspot cycle that can help determine a variety of mesoscale factors has been sent into turmoil over the past month.

In the attached image, you can see how the sunspot cycle was fairly regular over the last several months. However, as of late, the cycle has essentially shut down and has been in the minimum of the cycle for the past month or more. The unusual quietness of the sun could help explain why the cold seems more prolonged and spread out. It also may assist in showing why there has not been persistent low pressure in the West US, as the 30 day sunspot cycle and Pacific-North American index have a negative correlation with one another.

Potential implications in the near future include continued instances of slightly prolonged and slightly stronger cold weather across the nation than what it would be if the cycle was at its regular. Other impacts include less pressure on the Central and East US to produce dominant high pressure. Rather, they would be more inclined to keep low pressure/general cool weather in the aforementioned areas.

If the cycle does not get out of its unusual antics in the next month or two, we could be looking at some solid impacts on spring, including the potential for increased instances of cold weather and slightly increased stormy patterns.


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