– Solar wind is 13% cooler and 20% less dense (Ice Age Now, Oct 17, 2014):
“The IPCC was so obsessed with Mann’s tree rings and his hockey sticks they failed to notice the sun going into hibernation,”
says reader Norm Smith.
Here are excerpts from a NASA press release in 2008:
Curiously, the speed of the million mph solar wind hasn’t decreased much—only 3%. The change in pressure comes mainly from reductions in temperature and density. The solar wind is 13% cooler and 20% less dense.
“What we’re seeing is a long term trend, a steady decrease in pressure that began sometime in the mid-1990s,” explains Arik Posner, NASA’s Ulysses Program Scientist in Washington DC.
Heliosphere protects us from galactic cosmic rays
Flagging solar wind has repercussions across the entire solar system—beginning with the heliosphere.
The heliosphere is a bubble of magnetism springing from the sun and inflated to colossal proportions by the solar wind. Every planet from Mercury to Pluto and beyond is inside it. The heliosphere is our solar system’s first line of defense against galactic cosmic rays. High-energy particles from black holes and supernovas try to enter the solar system, but most are deflected by the heliosphere’s magnetic fields.
Less shielding against cosmic rays
“The solar wind isn’t inflating the heliosphere as much as it used to,” says McComas. “That means less shielding against cosmic rays.”
In addition to weakened solar wind, “Ulysses also finds that the sun’s underlying magnetic field has weakened by more than 30% since the mid-1990s,” says Posner. “This reduces natural shielding even more.”
Cosmic rays linked to cloudiness and climate change
Also, there are controversial studies linking cosmic ray fluxes to cloudiness and climate change on Earth. That link may be tested in the years ahead.
Thanks to Norm Smith for this link