Mac Slavo – July 9, 2017
As our sun’s activity slows and the star gets quieter, scientists’ fears of solar minimum are coming to the forefront. It isn’t the lack of activity that is terrifying those who study the sun, it’s what happens next that worries them all.
There would be nothing any of us could do if the sun’s activity decreases to the point that it causes the outermost atmospheric layer to collapse. No amount of taxation in the name of “global warming” will save anyone on earth from this outcome. But first, scientists have to worry about the sun reaching “solar minimum” and the possibility of losing the outermost layer of the atmosphere thanks to the rapid cooling.
Solar minimum is when the sun goes through a cycle of minimal activity, and right now, it’s on the verge of reaching this point. Our sun will near solar minimum in about 2019 or 2020. Unlike the name suggests, this lack of solar activity could cause an outer layer of the atmosphere called the thermosphere to contract and it’s not entirely clear what the effects of this could be on our planet.
The roughly 11-year cycle of the sun is reaching its low point, and soon. This means less energy is going to be released from our star in the form of solar flares, but it will mean we have solar winds to contend with. Professor Yvonne Elsworth at the University of Birmingham says that the next solar minimum could “be in about two years” but before then, the sun is expected to unleash significantly more radiation towards Earth.