More garbage science reporting about the sun

  • Thread starter davenn
  • Start date
  • #1
davenn
Science Advisor
Gold Member
2019 Award
9,341
8,021
a few days ago another member posted a thread about the Fox new report on a chunk of the sun flying towards Earth

here's yet another news item one an Australian online news site.....

Sun's magnetic field about to flip

Aug 07, 2013 8:34am

THE sun's huge magnetic field is about to flip, according to NASA.

The magnetic field is so big it extends billions of kilometres past Pluto, and NASA says its change will have ripple effects across the entire solar system as it changes between the sun's north and south poles.
Stanford University solar physicist Phil Scherrer said that while earth orbited the sun, it dips in and out of what solar physicists call the "current sheet" - an electrical current jutting out from the sun's equator.
While the magnetic field is changing polarity, the current sheet becomes wavy, which stirs up stormy space weather.
"The sun's polar magnetic fields weaken, go to zero, and then emerge again with the opposite polarity," Professor Scherrer said.
"The sun's north pole has already changed sign, while the south pole is racing to catch up."
The phenomenon will mark the middle of Solar Cycle 24.
But don't worry, it happens about every 11 years, so it's not going to be the end of the earth.
NO, it doesn't happen every 11 years on and NO it doesn't happen at the peak of the 11 year Solar sunspot cycle

1) the sun's overall magnetic field swaps every 22 years on avg
2) its the magnetic polarity of the sunspots that occurs every 11 years on avg
3) and the reversal of the sunspot magnetic fields occur at the beginning of the cycle not at the peak of the cycle. Its that reversal that heralds the beginning of the new cycle

cheers
Dave
 
Last edited:

Answers and Replies

  • #2
67
165
a few days ago another member posted a thread about the Fox new report on a chunk of the sun flying towards Earth

here's yet another news item one an Australian online news site.....

Sun's magnetic field about to flip

Aug 07, 2013 8:34am



NO, it doesn't happen every 11 years on and NO it doesn't happen at the peak of the 11 year Solar sunspot cycle

1) the sun's overall magnetic field swaps every 22 years on avg
2) its the magnetic polarity of the sunspots that occurs every 11 years on avg
3) and the reversal of the sunspot magnetic fields occur at the beginning of the cycle not at the peak of the cycle. Its that reversal that heralds the beginning of the new cycle

cheers
Dave
So NASA is wrong, right?:eek:

http://www.nasa.gov/content/goddard/the-suns-magnetic-field-is-about-to-flip/
 
  • #3
QuantumCurt
Education Advisor
726
166
I've read this same information on several very credible science sites, including NASA's site.

I'm certainly not an expert here...but if that's really inaccurate information, then this is a pretty major misreporting on NASA's behalf.
 
  • #4
D H
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Insights Author
15,393
685
NO, it doesn't happen every 11 years on and NO it doesn't happen at the peak of the 11 year Solar sunspot cycle
You are the one who's wrong here, davenn. You are confusing what happens with sunspots with what happens to the Sun as a whole. The reversal of the Sun's magnetic field is one of the key events during solar max.
 
  • #5
davenn
Science Advisor
Gold Member
2019 Award
9,341
8,021
there's plenty of places on the www that will tell you there are 2 cycles

the 11 year sunspot cycle and the 22 year solar cycle

show me a credible reference to when the 22 solar cycle magnetic field reverses its polarity please
none of the ones I have read tell me that.

Im not exactly new to this ... be following sunspots/solar activity for 40+ years.... but if there is NEW science that Im unaware of then I'm always willing to learn

Dave
 
  • #6
ZapperZ
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Education Advisor
Insights Author
35,847
4,669
Unfortunately, I wouldn't categorize this as bad science reporting, since the source came from NASA itself. So the news report IS reporting exactly what it heard from the horse's mouth. NASA even produced a video that said the very same thing:


So if there is a dispute here, it is NASA that should be the one under the gun, since they are the ones who provided the information.

Zz.
 
Last edited by a moderator:
  • #7
D H
Staff Emeritus
Science Advisor
Insights Author
15,393
685
show me a credible reference to when the 22 solar cycle magnetic field reverses its polarity please
Babcock, H. D. (1959). The Sun's Polar Magnetic Field. The Astrophysical Journal, 130, 364.
full article at http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1959ApJ...130..364B

Babcock, H. W. (1961). The Topology of the Sun's Magnetic Field and the 22-YEAR Cycle. The Astrophysical Journal, 133, 572.
full article at http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1961ApJ...133..572B

Leighton, R. B. (1964). Transport of Magnetic Fields on the Sun. The Astrophysical Journal, 140, 1547.
full article at http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1964ApJ...140.1547L

Leighton, R. B. (1969). A magneto-kinematic model of the solar cycle. The Astrophysical Journal, 156, 1.
full article at http://adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1969ApJ...156....1L

David H. Hathaway (2010). The Solar Cycle. Living Reviews in Solar Physics, 7 (2010), 1
full article at http://solarphysics.livingreviews.org/Articles/lrsp-2010-1/
 
  • Like
Likes 2 people
  • #8
davenn
Science Advisor
Gold Member
2019 Award
9,341
8,021
Thanks DH

that confirmed some things, cleared up some misunderstandings and taught me some totally previously unknown things :)

My misunderstanding was with the 22 year cycle, was that the polar magnetic field, which I falsely understood to flip every 22 years actually flips every 11 years. The 22 yrs refers to when its done a full cycle ie. south to north and back to south


as I said ... always willing to learn :)


Dave
 
Last edited:
  • #9
Chronos
Science Advisor
Gold Member
11,408
741
The sun suffers polarity flips on a fairly regular basis without dire consequences. The earth suffers similar, albeit less frequent such events. There is no credible evidence any such 'flips' coincide with mass extinctions, geological cataclysms, or other global catastrophes. I fail to see the significance.
 

Related Threads on More garbage science reporting about the sun

  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
2K
Replies
7
Views
2K
  • Last Post
Replies
2
Views
1K
Replies
4
Views
5K
Replies
4
Views
3K
Replies
3
Views
3K
Replies
11
Views
3K
Replies
9
Views
3K
Replies
16
Views
4K
Top