[CQ-Contest] RES: Modern Grand Solar Minimum (GSM) from 2020 to 2055?

Bob Shohet, KQ2M kq2m at kq2m.com
Tue Jun 25 17:21:53 EDT 2019

Without have read the entire article (it was extremely long and extremely detailed), there are a few things that clearly should be taken into account before accepting their prediction as “Gospel”:

1) They are making complex theoretical arguments that may well be correct, but could be equally incorrect for any number of reasons, including new information not yet discovered that could invalidate their conclusions and that augur for a different outcome.  (Just think about all the disagreements that research institutes have had over the current Cycle 24!)

2) The sample size they are basing this on is ONE, or in statistics, N=1.  One Maunder Minimum in “modern times” where it is impossible to know just how accurate the sunspot counts were.  In fact SSN V2 with a new formula attempts to correct for assumed inaccuracies in earlier sunspot counts and ESPECIALLY during the Maunder Minimum when newly theoretical sunspot counts were adjusted to be about 50% higher than were previously considered to be correct.

Painfully few accurate longstanding predictions can be made from anything where the occurrence is 1 time, much less predicting the exact period time with any accuracy.  

3) Even if the time period of their cycle is in fact 350-400 years with a high degree of accuracy (another source of speculation), they mention that it could be shifted one way or another by 50 or so years.  Which would mean that “Maunder II”, if it occurs, may not be from 2020 – 2055 but rather could actually start well AFTER that time period ends!  

4) I remember a similar prediction around 1976 that showed up as an article as well as the cover of a CQ Magazine showing a gas pump that was out of gas.  It was based on the best known Science and research at that time. Thankfully that prediction was DEAD WRONG.

This prediction may also be based on the best known Science and research of this time, and it may be correct or it may be dead wrong as well.  We just don’t know and won’t know for a long time to come.

5) In the future we will know more about the sun and solar cycles.  Some of that new information will contradict what the authors of this article believe now.  Some of it will confirm what they believe now.  Some of it will raise new questions and mysteries about the sun and solar cycles.  Whatever that information is and regardless of whenever it is discovered, it will most assuredly cause new predictions to be made that will likely conflict with if not outright contradict the predictions made in this article. 

6) Thanks due to the incredible technology that we now use in our stations and the quality and quantity of yagis and amount of stations that are active, I work far more DX on 15 and 20 in contests at the bottom of the sunspot cycle now than I ever did at the TOP of the cycle in the 1970’s and almost as much DX as I worked at the top of the cycle in the 1980’s.
And 40, 80 and 160 are vastly better now for DX than they ever were in any previous sunspot cycle.

And from where we are right now, with ZERO sunspot days as far as the eye can see, we can only go up from here.   :-)

73 and cu on the bands.
Bob  KQ2M

From: py5eg 
Sent: Tuesday, June 25, 2019 1:39 PM
To: donovanf at starpower.net ; cq-contest 
Subject: [CQ-Contest] RES: Modern Grand Solar Minimum (GSM) from 2020 to 2055?

Hi Frank
I have the same feeling about those predictions


-----Mensagem original-----
De: CQ-Contest [mailto:cq-contest-bounces at contesting.com] Em nome de donovanf at starpower.net
Enviada em: terça-feira, 25 de junho de 2019 03:11
Para: cq-contest
Assunto: [CQ-Contest] Modern Grand Solar Minimum (GSM) from 2020 to 2055?

This article in Nature forecasts that we're approaching a grand solar minimum -- similar to Maunder Minimum -- starting in 2020 and lasting for three solar cycles. I hope these scientists are wrong... 


An international panel of experts coordinated by the NOAA and NASA released its preliminary Solar Cycle 25 forecast in April, 2019 forecasting that solar cycle 25 will peak between 2023 and 2026 with a sunspot number between 95 and 130. 

I hate forecasts, especially about the future... 


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