Status Report

SOHO Pick of the Week: Sunspots peaking again

By SpaceRef Editor
January 24, 2002
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  • Higher resolution version (TIF, 5.0M)

    The number of sunspots is surging again, suggesting a second period
    of peak activity in this solar cycle. Scientists track solar cycles
    by counting sunspots and this solar cycle reached its peak level in
    July, 2000. Since then, the number of sunspots and general solar
    activity, though still high, had begun to diminish as expected (see
    image for December, 2000). But, as this chart shows, the number of
    spots has generally increased again over the past several months to a
    second peak, almost as high as the first. Interestingly, the same
    “double-peak” pattern was observed during the last solar cycle.

    Previous Picks of the Week

  • SpaceRef staff editor.