An Early Prediction of Maximum Sunspot Number in Solar Cycle 24
- Cite this article as:
- Duhau, S. Solar Physics (2003) 213: 203. doi:10.1023/A:1023260916825
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A non-linear coupling function between sunspot maxima and aa minima modulations has been found as a result of a wavelet analysis of geomagnetic index aa and Wolf sunspot number yearly means since 1844. It has been demonstrated that the increase of these modulations for the past 158 years has not been steady, instead, it has occurred in less than 30 years starting around 1923. Otherwise sunspot maxima have oscillated about a constant level of 90 and 141, prior to 1923 and after 1949, respectively. The relevance of these findings regarding the forecasting of solar activity is analyzed here. It is found that if sunspot cycle maxima were still oscillating around the 141 constant value, then the Gnevyshev–Ohl rule would be violated for two consecutive even–odd sunspot pairs (22–23 and 24–25) for the first time in 1700 years. Instead, we present evidence that solar activity is in a declining episode that started about 1993. A value for maximum sunspot number in solar cycle 24 (87.5±23.5) is estimated from our results.