Thursday, April 30, 2015
ALMOST BLANK SUN
The sunspot number is plummeting toward zero. Only a few dark cores are peppering the face of the sun, and they are so small you might have trouble finding them in this April 30th image from the Solar Dynamics Observatory:
Almost no sunspots = almost no solar activity. The sun's X-ray output has flatlined, and NOAA forecasters estimate a scant 1% chance of strong flares in the next 24 hours.
If the sunspot number continues to drop, the sun could become completely blank. Blank, spotless suns are a sign that Solar Max is ending. Stay tuned for ... quiet?