Giant sunspot group AR1944 seen in January of 2014. Credit: NASA/SDO
AUSTIN, Texas, July 9, 2015 – On June 30, 2015 the globally recognized maximum for the current 11-year sunspot cycle was 81.9. On July 1, 2015 that number suddenly leaped all the way up to 116.4!
Stranger still, the current cycle (Cycle 24) fell from being the 7th weakest sunspot maximum since 1749 to being the 4th weakest sunspot maximum. Cycle 24’s sunspot number jumped by 30 percent, yet its ranking dropped by three places. How can that be?
After a 4-year study, solar astronomers modernized the entire 405-year sunspot history for the first time since its creation in 1849. Now, count tallies more closely match the actual tallies of today’s observers using modern technology….
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