SOLAR HIBERNATION

3/5/2018
Joe Maxwell is a retired industrial designer who is still designing. He has been self-employed since 1962 and has designed many major projects, such as the La Dome restaurant in Ft. Lauderdale and the Landside Terminal at Tampa International Airport, which opened in 1971, a time when the airport was voted the most liked in the world. Joe became a design consultant to Tampa International from 1980 until 1995.



Joe moved his family and business to Burnsville in 1972. From here he has worked on the interior architecture and furnishing for the Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport, a 700-bed hospital in Chattanooga, as well as being involved in 19 airport terminals around the country.



SOLAR HIBERNATION
3/5/2018


Our climate is controlled by the sun, which goes through many cycles, including the 11 year, the 100 year, and the 206 year cycle. There are more, but their duration is too long to effect us. The most interesting are the 11 year and the 206 year cycles. The amount of sunspots that occur during these cycles tell us about the activity of the sun. Many sunspots indicate high activity, and few sunspots indicate low activity. The 11 year cycles continue one after another and provide continuous information about the sun’s activity by the sunspots. These solar cycles have been consistent for many thousands of years and have been studied through written material, paintings, tree rings, ice cores, and sediment cores. The sun has entered into its 206 year cycle where it produces less energy, so the planets in our solar system, including the earth, are going to cool down.  Solar scientists are able to predict how severe this 206 cycle will be by the sunspot counts in the prior 11 year cycles. This reduced activity of the sun is called a “Solar Minimum” or “Solar Hibernation.” If this minimum is going to be extreme it is called a “Grand Solar Minimum.” This is what we have entered. (The word “hibernation” better describes what is happening than “minimum,” so I will use it as John L. Casey, an outstanding solar scientist, has proposed.)


In a solar hibernation several things happen with the sun: It puts out fewer sunspots, reduces solar winds, and its magnetic poles reverse. Its magnetic field diminishes, Its size reduces and it radiates less heat energy. It hibernates for a period of 30 to 50 or more years where the earth becomes very cold. Other things contribute to the cooling process: The reduced solar winds and magnetic fields allow galactic rays to hit the earth, forming more clouds that block the sun. As the world cools, far more huge volcanoes erupt, putting out particles which also block the sun. They put out sulfur fumes that create sulfur dioxide, which converts to sulfuric acid that again blocks the sun. These add up to an extremely cold earth. As the earth gets colder, worldwide earthquakes begin to happen. These are the big ones like the ones along the New Madrid Fault in the Mississippi valley, near Memphis and St Louis. Three New Madrid earthquakes began in December 1811 and continued into 1812. They were the most powerful earthquakes in North American history, a series of three 8.0 quakes, as well as many smaller ones. We have a number of faults near us, one along the Tennessee line and some in South Carolina, including a major one sitting under Charleston.

I will be writing reports about this every other week and I am working on developing a blog to compliment these reports with links and an archive of present and past reports.

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