Jackpot! Jupiter and Saturn – Solar cycle link confirmed

Posted: August 5, 2011 by tallbloke in Astronomy, Astrophysics, Solar physics, solar system dynamics

We have found really good evidence that the orbits of planets  are intimately linked with the solar cycle and influence solar activity levels. Jupiter and Saturn are the two biggest planets in the solar system. They both have strong magnetospheres which exhibit immense aurorae at their poles. Their orbital distances and velocities are such that the timings generated by their interaction match timings derived from spectrographic analysis of the Sun’s activity as demonstrated below. What is the probability that these relationships are due to mere chance or coincidence? In our view – vanishingly small. So are we claiming that the planets cause the Sun’s activity cycles? We believe this is the wrong question. The question we should be asking is:

What are the feedback mechanisms which bring about these relationships,  how are they maintained, and what is their physical basis?

But first things first, what have we found?

Over on Bart’s thread, we’ve been looking at a Power Spectral Density (PSD) analysis of the Sunspot data from 1749. After the application of some clever signal processing techniques, Bart says:

The sunspot count appears to reflect the energy of these combined processes at around 20 and 23.6 years, which necessarily has apparent periods of 0.5*T1, 0.5*T2, T1*T2/(T2+T1), and T1*T2/(T2-T1) years, or 10 years, 11.8 years, 10.8 years, and 131 years.

The 11.8 year period is very close to 11.86 years, the orbital period of Jupiter.

The 10 year period is very close to 9.93 years, half the synodic period of Jupiter and Saturn.
(Conjunction and opposition of these two planets are both effective tidally)

So if we hypothesise that these are the two planetary frequencies which are combining to govern the solar cycle, we are left with the 10.8 year period and 131 year period to explain in terms of their appearance in the spectral analysis.

But our solar physicist disputant Leif Svalgaard says the opposite. He maintains the 10.8 year period is the fundamental oscillation period of the so called ‘Solar Dynamo’ theory still favoured by the mainstream solar scientists, and coupled with the longer period, can then reproduce the periods which only coincidentally tally with the orbits and conjunctions of Jupiter and Saturn. Both interpretations are equivalent, and so we are left needing more evidence to settle the matter one way or the other.

Yesterday on the Hale cycle thread, regular contributor Tenuc put up a link to a graph he had found on the net claiming to show a strong correlation between Jupiters changing distance from the Sun and the average sunspot number. I traced this back to the original thread it had come from on Bautforum.com and there I found a link to a 1984 paper by Schwentek and Elling of the Max Planck Institute for Aeronomy. Here’s the Abstract:

And there in the last sentence of the paragraph is a big clue:

The clearly dominant spectral band in sunspot number, the solar cycle of 10.8 years. is given by the configuration period of Jupiter and Saturn (19.859 yr) times the ratio of their distances from the Sun (0.545)

This is in fact equivalent to Bart’s third formula for ‘necessarily apparent periods'; T1*T2/(T2+T1)

i.e. 23.72 (twice Jupiters orbital period) times 19.85 (the J-S synodic period) all divided by 23.72 plus 19.85, which equals 10.806.

Kepler’s third law states: The square of the orbital period of a planet is directly proportional to the cube of the semi-major axis of its orbit.

So for the orbits of Jupiter(11.86 years) and Saturn(29.46 years) we find that the squares (multiplication by itself) of the orbital periods are 140.67 and 867.3. The cube roots of these values are 5.2 and 9.54. The ratio of these values (one divided by the other) is 0.545. Jupiter’s orbit is a little over half the size of Saturn’s.

As Jupiter passes Saturn at conjunction it then takes just under 20 years for Jupiter to catch up with Saturn again. We can calculate this using a law discovered by Kepler’s mentor Copernicus:
The Synodic period is given by the inverse of the inverse of the orbital period of the slower  moving body minus the inverse of the orbital period of the faster moving body:

Synodic period of Jupiter and Saturn is 1/(1/11.86 – 1/29.46)=19.852 years

We can then multiply that result by the orbital distance ratio of 0.545 we calculated to obtain 10.819

The mismatch of 0.013 between Bart’s theoretical result (10.806) and this celestial mechanic’s result is due to the imperfection of Keplers law (discovered 1619), which in fact applies only to single bodies of zero mass, but it’s near enough for farmwork. :)

So all three periods around the length of the solar cycle which are observed in the spectral analysis of the sunspot numbers derive from the related orbital motions of Saturn and Jupiter. The fourth ‘necessarily apparent’ period of ~131 years is given by Bart’s equation T1*T2/(T2-T1) years. When we use the actual orbital periods rather than the DSP analysis estimates this works out at 122 years, which is within error for the spectral analysis, which reaches limits of useability as the frequency of the period’s appearance in the length of the dataset approaches zero.

The half period of 122 is 61 years and this also turns out to be related to Jupiter and Saturn another way.  The 61-year cycle is given by 1/(1/9.93 – 1/11.86), where 9.93 is half the time between conjunctions of Saturn and Jupiter (half, because tides are raised also on the other side of the sun), and 11.86 is Jupiter’s orbital period, as was suggested long ago by Brown [MNRAS, vol 60, pages 599-606, 1900] – My thanks to Leif Svalgaard for this excellent reference!

Furthermore, if we consider the fact that Jupiter’s orbital period is itself close to the average length of the solar cycle, and the fact that the alternating magnetic polarity of the solar cycles means that the Hale cycle of double the length can be considered as a solar cycle in it’s own right, then we can also take a look at what we get by doubling Jupiters orbital period in the above equation. 1/(1/9.93 – 1/23.72)=17.01 years, the period Leif Svalgaard claims for the “true solar cycle length” due to the continuing appearance of ‘old polarity’ sunspots after the new ~11 year Schwabe cycle has begun and ‘new polarity’ spots start to appear before it finishes.

Five out of five solar periods now accounted for by Jupiter and Saturn:

Kerrrching – JACKPOT!

We hypothesise that Saturn and Jupiter provide the background drumbeat which governs the solar cycle. The modulation of that beat by the other heavy gas giant planets and magnetically active inner planets is the subject of further investigation which has been taking place on this blog and others. We are getting closer to solving the puzzle and being able to predict the future evolution of solar activity levels with a high degree of confidence. That will revolutionise climate science, because once we can confidently predict solar activity, climatologists will ‘rediscover’ the Sun as an important climate driver. Watch this space.

Comments
  1. vukcevic says:

    Good luck.
    I’ve been at it for some years now, not getting very far though.

    http://cdsweb.cern.ch/record/704882/files/0401107.pdf

    http://www.vukcevic.co.uk/solarcurrent.pdf

    Currently the climate change is more fun.

  2. tallbloke says:

    Hey Vuk, keep us informed with your climate findings. We are still working on the underpinnings here.

    Your previous work in this area is recognised on this blog and we thank you for all you have been contributing here and elsewhere. I’ve saved copies of the pdf’s and no doubt will be referring to them in future posts.

  3. Stephen Wilde says:

    Nice.

    However I think the sun is a significant climate driver whatever it is that causes solar variability.

  4. tallbloke says:

    Hi Stephen, agreed, we just need to convince the funding agencies. But the key here is credible prediction. Once we can show a spot on reconstruction, with theoretical underpinning and viable mechanism, the scientists will take notice. I think this is a good step along the way.

  5. tallbloke says:

    Updated with more Jovian goodness, Leif’s 17 year solar cycle explained!

  6. Paul Vaughan says:

    What you’re saying [in a nutshell] about J & (J-S)/2 is:
    a) harmonic mean = 10.8132669965766.
    b) beat period = 60.9251902780317.

  7. tallbloke says:

    Hi Paul, thanks for providing the correct technical terms. The puzzle now is to understand how these and the other numerical relationships at 9.93, 17.01, 19.86, 23.72 and 122 years actually link to solar activity via the fundamental forces of gravitation and electro-magnetism. I think a couple of clues have emerged during the exercise, and I’ll be thinking about those going forward. I hope others will too.

    Regarding Leif’s 17 year “true solar cycle” it’s also worth noting that the simple difference between the J-S ‘tidal’ period at 9.93 years and 17 is just over 7 years. The difference between 17 years and the period of two Jupiter orbits is a bit under 7 years. I think this is potentially the explanation for why opposite polarity spots start appearing later in the solar cycle and old polarity spots carry on appearing after the new cycle has begun.

    I reckon there’s a worthwhile study to be done looking into the Greenwich records from 1870-2005 to look at the incidence of opposite polarity spots and relating them to the phase of the J-S synodic periods.

  8. tallbloke says:

    Solar rotation speed at the equator is ~25.6 days
    At the poles it’s ~35 days
    In between, at around 60 degrees latitude, it’s ~30.9 days.

    Jupiter’s orbital period is 11.86 years
    If you take the inverse of 11.86 years you get 0.084 years
    0.084 years is also 30.9 days.

    Just sayin’. 8)

  9. Paul Vaughan says:

    The harmonic mean of J & S is 16.9202564016979.

  10. tallbloke says:

    Thanks Paul, is that calculated in a different way to the method I used to get my 17.01 figure?
    1/(1/9.93 – 1/23.72)=17.01

  11. Paul Vaughan says:

    ‘Cyclomania’ 101, Lesson 1:

    Subtraction & addition:

    1) A*B / |A-B|
    2) A*B / |A+B|

    Double the latter (#2) = harmonic mean. Divide numerators (top) & denominators (bottom) by A*B to see equivalence of alternate expressions one encounters.

    | | indicates absolute value.

    In Excel:
    | | = abs()

    [Note: Sometimes the sign matters -- not covered in lesson#1.]

  12. tallbloke says:

    Thanks Paul. Those are the same expressions given by Bart, but the x2 for the harmonic mean escaped my because Bart put it the other way about with halving the 19.86 and 23.72 values. I’ll have to ponder the similar values obtained by the two methods, as I don’t see how one expression can be transformed to the other at the moment. There must be some simple relationship which produces the close equivalence, but it escapes me.

  13. Geoff Cruickshank says:

    Tallbloke, I think your expression comes out at 17.08046.
    (Interesting thoughts though)

  14. tallbloke says:

    Hi Geoff and welcome to the talkshop. Is the discrepancy due to us using slightly different periods? Which figures are you working with? Leif Svalgaard says the ~17 year cycle is hard to pin an exact figure to. See slides 41 to 45 in his pdf: http://www.leif.org/research/SHINE-2011-The-Forgotten-Sun.pdf
    Thanks

  15. Ulric Lyons says:

    Neither Saturn/Jupiter syzygies or any fixed point in Jupiter`s orbit follow the solar cycles historically, so how can they be the cause of the sunspot cycles ?

  16. tallbloke says:

    Hi Ulric,

    The effect on the solar cycle of the other planets modulates the ‘carrier wave’ generated by Jupiter and Saturn. The two biggest planets in the solar system have the biggest effect, but the action of the other planets means that solar cycles tend to hop in length between two main periods of around 10.4 years and around 12 years. They are less freqently at or near the average length.

    The Sun wants to go with J&S but the other planets have an effect too. Saturn and Jupiter are the heavyweights which mainly account for Solar – barycentric motion and have the periods which match long term solar cycle average periods revealed in the spectragraphic analysis of the sunspot record.

    Jupiter Earth and Venus are the most tidally effective planets and the actual cycle to cycle lengths closely mirror their alignment patterns, except when the heavyweights Uranus and Neptune align so as to cause the solar barycentric motion to enter an unusual phase causing a major hiccup in the activity cycle.

    Jupiter Saturn and Earth are the most electro-dynamically effective planets and its possible that NASA’s recently discovered ‘flux tube’ reconnections between these planet’s magnetospheres and the Sun have an important role too.

    Finally, although we tend to slip into talking in terms of cause and effect, we need to bear in mind that the solar activity cycles are an outcome of solar system wide physical processes which interact to maintain the orbits of the planets and the rhythm of the solar output. This is a logical conclusion which I can expand on if you want.

  17. Ulric Lyons says:

    Having found the Jupiter/Earth/Venus relationship to the sunspot cycle back in 2005, I don`t need convincing of that, I don`t think the action is tidal though. The Ju/Sa synodic periods just do not follow the solar cycles at all, what their distance ratio has to do with it ?

  18. Ulric Lyons says:

    typo ~ what has their distance ratio have to do with it ?

  19. [...] Comments Ulric Lyons on Jackpot! Jupiter and Saturn …Ulric Lyons on Jackpot! Jupiter and Saturn …tallbloke on Jackpot! Jupiter and Saturn [...]

  20. Bart Leplae says:

    Jupiter and Saturn are indeed govern the frequency of the of the Solar Cycle, but all other planets superpose a level of AM (Amplitude Modulation) and FM (Frequency Modulation), thereby influencing the Solar Cycle as well. An example is the end of the last and the start of the current Solar Cycle showing both a decreased amplitude and decreased frequency.

    See my paper: Solar Cycle induced through Coriolis effect on: http://www.wbabin.net/files/4451_leplae5.pdf

  21. tallbloke says:

    Ulric, the distance ratio is a function of Jupiter and Saturn’s relative mass and velocity, and thus angular momentum. These in turn are functions of the fluctuation in the strength of the solar wind which put them into those orbits. Due to the spin orbit coupling which was present while that was happening, the feedback from the Jupiter Saturn interaction to the Sun via the barycentric orbit they force the Sun to follow affected solar output as Wolff and Patrone demonstrate. Resonant feedback shaped the solar system, and I postulate that still plays a subtle role in maintaining the orbital interactions and the solar cycle periodicities.

    “The Ju/Sa synodic periods just do not follow the solar cycles at all”

    This is the wrong way round to consider the issue. The Sun can’t just follow Jupiter and Saturn, because the other gas giants and inner planets also have an effect. The Sun has to thread its way between them all. What I’m saying is that Jupiter and Saturn provide the largest oscillation, and the other planets modulate that oscillation. The Solar cycle is the resultant of all those interactions. And we’re not just talking simple sine waves, because the interior of the Sun has a density gradient and boundaries between the radiative and convective zone. The Wolff-Patrone mechanism needs developing theoretically to work out the non-linear result of the barycentric motion.

    “Having found the Jupiter/Earth/Venus relationship to the sunspot cycle back in 2005, I don`t need convincing of that, I don`t think the action is tidal though.”

    I think Desmoulins was there too. I agree the predominant effect of the JEV synchronisation may be electrodynamic rather than tidal. This doesn’t invalidate observations regarding timings however.

    Bart: Thanks for the link, I’ll take another look at your latest version.

  22. tallbloke says:

    Ulric: another thought for you to consider. The spectrographic analysis of the sunspot record doesn’t lie. The periodic frequencies at 9.93, 10.8 and 11.86 years are really there. The manifestation of those periods obviously isn’t just in the timings of the maxima and minima, and the amplitudes, but is also hidden in the shapes of the cycles. It seems that the timing of the maxima and minima is predominantly a JEV thing, with a bit of Jupiter-Neptune too. The amplitude of the cycle is more J-S, because they are the big boys who bully the Sun into releasing more energy, which manifests as sunspots when the JEV timings coax that extra energy to do something we can see.

  23. Ulric Lyons says:

    Whatever the mechanisms, the peak effects of Ju and Sa should be at the frequency of their synodic period (and maybe half of it), the distance ratio does not matter.
    Ray identified solar cycle length clusters at 10.4 and 12yrs, very much Ea/Ve periods.
    Also you have said first that Ju and Sa are the frequency of the solar cycle, now you saying they are the amplitude (which is clearly not the case if you check cycle amplitudes at every Sa/Ju conjunct).

  24. Ulric Lyons says:

    “I think Desmoulins was there too.”

    Yes years earlier, it was pleasing to find someone else had noticed the correlation too.

  25. steven mosher says:

    [snip]

    [Moderation note] Mosh: Repost your comment on a relevant thread and I will reply.

  26. tallbloke says:

    Ulric says:
    Whatever the mechanisms, the peak effects of Ju and Sa should be at the frequency of their synodic period (and maybe half of it), the distance ratio does not matter.

    Have a read of the feedback thread. Hopefully you’ll see that the distance ratio does matter. If Wolff and Patrone are right, then the effect is predominantly barycentric, not tidal. And the solar – barycentric motion is governed not just by J-S but by Uranus and Neptune as well. That’s why the changes in solar activity don’t work at the J-S frequencies precisely and also vary. There is modulation from the other planets. We are not dealing with a simple combination of sine waves, but, analogously, the response of a coupled oscillator with damping to a changing multiple input. Simple it ain’t.

    Ray identified solar cycle length clusters at 10.4 and 12yrs, very much Ea/Ve periods.

    Yes, Ray Tomes and Ian WIlson find the conjunction cycles of JEV (not just Earth and Venus) fit those periods, and Timo Niroma found the same periods in his solar cycle length analysis. As I said in my previous reply:
    “The amplitude of the cycle is more J-S, because they are the big boys who bully the Sun into releasing more energy, which manifests as sunspots when the JEV timings coax that extra energy to do something we can see.”

    Also you have said first that Ju and Sa are the frequency of the solar cycle,
    No I didn’t. I said J-S frequencies match the frequencies found in the spectrographic analysis of the sunspot record, specifically 9.93, 10.8 and 11.86 years. This is true and incontrovertible.

    now you saying they are the amplitude (which is clearly not the case if you check cycle amplitudes at every Sa/Ju conjunct).
    No I’m not. I’m saying “they are the big boys who bully the Sun into releasing more energy, which manifests as sunspots when the JEV timings coax that extra energy to do something we can see.”
    So they bring about the background energy availability which is converted to visible sunspots (and coronal holes and solar wind variation maybe?).

    it was pleasing to find someone else had noticed the correlation too.

    A lot of the stuff we’ve been ‘discovering’ was already in the literature years ago, but buried under dust and ignored by a mainstream solar theory which would rather that people didn’t notice all the ‘coincidences’ with planetary timings and ask awkward questions.

  27. Ulric Lyons says:

    No I don`t see that the distance ratio matters, and I don`t think the mechanisms are gravitational for the Superior or the Inferior planets.

    “No I didn’t. I said J-S frequencies match the frequencies found in the spectrographic analysis of the sunspot record, specifically 9.93, 10.8 and 11.86 years.”

    Which is an frequency issue rather than amplitude, and what lengths are correct, these, or c.10.4 and 12 ? And if the distance ratio is of no concern, then the periods in this article have no meaning.

    “Yes, Ray Tomes and Ian WIlson find the conjunction cycles of JEV (not just Earth and Venus) fit those periods,”

    But it is the alternate V conjunct E in line with Jupiter in one cycle, and V opposite E in line with Jupiter in the next cycle that define these periods (c.10.4 and 12yrs), as I pointed out in an earlier post.

    “they are the big boys who bully the Sun into releasing more energy, which manifests as sunspots when the JEV timings coax that extra energy to do something we can see.”

    Well if we could see a consistency at J/S syzygies you may have a point, but we don`t.

  28. tallbloke says:

    No I don`t see that the distance ratio matters, and I don`t think the mechanisms are gravitational for the Superior or the Inferior planets.

    Ok, if you don’t think gravity is involved, then the distance ratio is irrelevant so far as you are concerned. We’ll agree to disagree about this.

    I said J-S frequencies match the frequencies found in the spectrographic analysis of the sunspot record, specifically 9.93, 10.8 and 11.86 years.

    Which is an frequency issue rather than amplitude, and what lengths are correct, these, or c.10.4 and 12 ?

    They are all correct insofar as they are all observed. The J-S timings in the spectrographic analysis (of amplitude), and all of them in solar cycle lengths, particularly JEV timings.

    “they are the big boys who bully the Sun into releasing more energy, which manifests as sunspots when the JEV timings coax that extra energy to do something we can see.”

    Well if we could see a consistency at J/S syzygies you may have a point, but we don`t.

    As I said earlier, we don’t just need to look at peak and minimum amplitudes and timings, but at the shape of the curves of the sunspot record. This is because the spectrographic analysis doesn’t lie, and the periodicities at 9.93, 10.8 and 11.86 are really there. We need to integrate the sunspot numbers under each solar cycle and compare the results with the phase of those three cycles periods. Timo Niroma had some useful observations regarding Jupiter perihelion and the timing of solar cycle minimum. I need to study his work again.

    There, something valuable has come out of this discussion. Thanks.

  29. Ulric Lyons says:

    “As I said earlier, we don’t just need to look at peak and minimum amplitudes and timings,..”

    Yes I got that, which is why I said `looking at J/S syzygies`, rather than at solar cycle maximums and minimums.

    Looking at the spectral analysis results, the 10.8 and 11.8 would be harmonics of the 5.4 and 5.9:

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2011/07/31/bart-modeling-the-historical-sunspot-record-from-planetary-periods/

    and are resonant with Inferior planet synodic periods.

    I still can`t see the point of multiplying the J/S synod by their distance ratio.

  30. tallbloke says:

    Thanks for that. Which inferior planet synodic periods? I’ll certainly factor them into my thinking once you tell me which they are. :)

    I still can`t see the point of multiplying the J/S synod by their distance ratio.

    Because the quantities are related by the progression of mass distribution from the Sun.

    “In comparing the masses of the Earth, Jupiter and Saturn to their volumes, one remarks that the
    densities of these planets are, to some degree, inverse to their mean distances from the Sun.”
    – le Verrier – 1859
    The ratio of their densities is 0.52. The ratio of their distances from the sun is 0.535.

    10.8 is also derived by T1*T2/T2+T1 as Bart’s thread shows. So there’s a harmonic relationship too. This is related to the orbital distance ratio because the period of the orbits is a function of distance and mass as Newton demonstrated. I haven’t worked out the derivation yet, but it’s on the to do list because the inverse of Jupiters orbital period is also the mean solar rotation rate, and the inverse of Saturn’s is close to the solar equatorial rotation rate! :)

    And yet another jackpot, the solar polar rotation rate is given by the inverse of the half period of the Jupiter – Saturn synodic period. Spin-orbit coupling city! :) :)

  31. Ulric Lyons says:

    Actually, J/E/M and J/V/M periods Tallbloke, which is what we would expect considering these 4 bodies can give larger propagation of sunspots and flares ~ re. Nelson and Hung.
    If the spectral analysis shows peaks at 10.786yrs and 11.874yrs (and half of these periods), it would confirm this.

  32. tallbloke says:

    Hi Ulric, very interesting, thanks for that.
    Tow of the peaks in the spectrum are indeed very close to both those periods, so we have a potential confounding issue here, because of the closeness of the Jupiter orbital period at 11.86 years, and the harmonic of that and the half period of the Jupiter -Saturn synodic period given by T1*T2/(T2+T1) and the curious synodic period multiplied by orbital distance ratio which also gives 10.8 years.

    Presumably though, the 11.874 year relationship precesses because it’s a bit longer than the Jupiter orbital period?

    Which planets are involved with which periods?

  33. Ulric Lyons says:

    There are a number of resonances of Earth/Mercury with Jupiter, at
    7, 17, 24, 31, 38 Ea/Me synods: 2.22yrs, 5.39yrs, 7.61yrs, 9.83yrs and 12.055yrs. The longer ones repeat better of course.
    I was mistaken about J/V/M for the 11.874yr period, there is though a very stable Mars/Venus/Mercury cycle at 30 Ve/Me synods (144.56823d x 30).

  34. adolfogiurfa says:

    What is it going right now?, as the sunspots have disappeared, though imaginary SSN is at 25. How does this relate with Jupiter position?

  35. ferd berple says:

    The problem for mainstream solar science is that any discussion of the effects of the planets on the sun leaves them open to ridicule as “Astrology”.

    One should not under under estimate the effects of this in the development of scientific theory since the end of WWII. The “Astrology” label has been used time and time again in the US and other countries to kill the careers of competing scientists trying to secure limited grant money. Without grant money few can continue to research the question.

    Over time, this has caused mainstream science, largely led by the US, to drop any theories or research on planetary effects on the solar cycle and climate. It has nothing to do with the validity of the theories, it is the corrupting influence of selective funding.

  36. adolfogiurfa says:

    @ferd berple says:
    August 14, 2011 at 4:58 pm
    However, if everything is electrically connected….then astrology it´s ok..

  37. P.G. Sharrow says:

    It’s a good thing electricity was figured out over 100 years ago. Radio would be impossiable under todays accepted thinking.
    Astrology is the base that much of science was built on and deserves better respect. While the understanding of why astrology works is not clear, it does represent over 5,000 years of observation of effects.
    Just because I do not understand why something works does not mean it can not exist. This just means my understanding is incomplete. pg

  38. Tenuc says:

    P.G. Sharrow says:
    August 15, 2011 at 2:30 pm
    “…Astrology is the base that much of science was built on and deserves better respect. While the understanding of why astrology works is not clear, it does represent over 5,000 years of observation of effects.
    Just because I do not understand why something works does not mean it can not exist. This just means my understanding is incomplete.”

    Here, hear PG… We too often forget our heritage and science has become riddled by know-alls who think there is little to be learned from our forebears. Many of the revered scientists from history had an interest in the esoteric arts – yes, even that paragon of science Sir Isaac Newton enjoyed dabbling in alchemy!

    One of my late uncles developed serious arthritis in his early thirties and after enduring almost fifteen years of varying conventional treatment found himself bound to a wheelchair. Out of desperation he tried the services of an acupuncturist and, much to the surprise of his doctor, he was fully mobile again in under a year.

    The theory behind acupuncture is that chi energy can become blocked to parts of the body and the needles inserted bypass the blockage and improve the flow. After seeing this happen, Ive always believed that there is a connectedness between all things in the universe and that there is a constant background canvas of particles permeating space on which the wonderful structures we observe are worked.

  39. tallbloke says:

    Ulric, thanks for the clarification, correction and further obs. These close numerical fits between J&S synod/2 and the inner planet cycles have suggestive beat periods. 97.612 years for the Ma-Ve-Me cycle for example.

    Ferd is about right I fear. And it is to the detriment of our understanding. It has left a ripe field of exploration for us amateurs though. :)

  40. Ulric Lyons says:

    97.612 years ? can you break that down ?

  41. adolfogiurfa says:

    @P.G. Sharrow: Your analogy is right: We usually represent radio waves as single waves though they must be the same as Birkeland currents: The Hermes´caduceus ( κηρύκειον ), sin+cos, an alternate current.

  42. Ninderthana says:

    Ulric Lyons and Tallbloke,

    Here is my paper about the apparent connection between solar activity and the position angle
    of Jupiter to the line joining the Sun, Venus and Earth, at the times of syzygy of Venus and
    Earth. I was not fully aware of your work Ulric at the time I wrote this paper, so I apologize for
    not mentioning your work. Is there a web site that has some of your ideas posted on it so
    that see how your work differs from mine.

    http://www.wbabin.net/files/4425_wilson1.pdf

  43. tallbloke says:

    Thanks Ninderthana, your paper is very clear and scientifically presented. A touchstone for all planetary data explorers.

  44. tchannon says:

    Nicely written paper. Shows how it is possible to present what some will see as contentious material without the unreadability of spin.

    Yes the content is interesting. No particular take on it at the moment but I do have a couple of questions.

    There is unique sunspot activity around 1780/90 where many general ideas about solar activity fail. Can you discuss this please.

    You mention JPL ephemeris but don’t state which version. (guess it is unimportant in this case anyway)

  45. Try talking to the people who manage deep solar probes. It is not just gravity (abs and relational-orbital), but the full EM spectrum that needs to be examined. The magnetic and xray compoents of the gas giants are so powerful that they need to included in probe path planning. They are not static forces and this causes further problems.
    Although I have had an informed suspicion that the gas giants play a huge role in the suns behaviour, I strongly believe that there are more varables that need to counted in before solar activity prediction, is as easy as a set of period fractions.
    Not the climate sceptic Geoff Sherrington

  46. [...] comments on the Jupiter Jackpot thread I noted in passing that there seems to be a relationship between the inverse of the period of [...]

  47. [...] it is topical, I’ll concentrate on Jupiter and Saturn in this post. In an earlier post, and in Nicola Scafetta’s paper currently under discussion, it has been shown that the [...]

  48. Greg Goodman says:

    tallbloke says:
    Jupiter’s orbital period is 11.86 years
    If you take the inverse of 11.86 years you get 0.084 years
    0.084 years is also 30.9 days.

    Just sayin’. 8)

    No, the inverse of 11.86 years is 0.084 per year , it’s a frequency. It most definitely does not equal 30.9 days.

    I think that is a very good example of the dangers of this sort of playing with numbers and why Lief dismisses it as “numerology”. I’m not a fan of Lief’s attitude but I think there is a very valid point there that you need to be more aware of.

    Equally I don’t think you can “find” his 17y solar cycle because it does not exist. There is no defined start and end to it and they are isolated events not repetitive cycles so they have not “period”. Taking a lower cut-off you could probably stretch it to 19.9y and fit that too.

    Once you start playing product of inverse / difference of inverse of sum …, halving or doubling what periods you do have etc. , you will be able to find any number you want to come up with. It really is numerology.

    I am very, very impressed with Bart’s analysis. I’ve seen other stuff he’s posted and this man definitely knows his stuff.

  49. tallbloke says:

    Hi Greg, and thanks for your comment. Yes, I put my finding about the relationship between Jupiter’s orbital period and solar rotation rate badly here by talking about inverses in this context. I clarified the issue in a later post, which is linked in the pingback above:

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2011/11/19/solar-planetary-spin-orbit-coupling-more-evidence/

    Regarding Leif’s 17 year cycle. He has changed his story on this over time. However, it’s worth noting that alternate solar cycles are of opposite polarity, so it’s as if there are two Hale cycles of ~22 years overlapping, with one polarity ‘drowning out’ the other over a period of approx 17 years. In any case, this is a subsiduary issue to the principle harmonics, though maybe an important one in other respects.

    Yes, Bart’s work is very impressive, and Bart recently commented that the planetary connection may be true after all, and is giving the matter more thought.

    The principle finding here, that the periods found in Bart’s MEM analysis match the frequencies of Jupiter and Saturn and the half period of their synodic conjunction stand. There is a justifiable basis for the half period, since combined tides are effective at conjunction and opposition, so I disagree with you that halving the period is ‘numerology’. Also, there are many 3:2 relationships in the solar system between planets orbital parameters: Mercury-Sun spin/orbit, Venus-Earth orbital and Venus spin, and many more.

    Finally, it should be noticed that Bart’s findings and my interpretation of them was cross-checked, validated, quantified, extended with a model which sucessfully hindcasts the holocene Be10 record, and published in the Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics by Nicola Scafetta seven months later.

    http://tallbloke.wordpress.com/2012/03/21/nicola-scafetta-major-new-paper-on-solar-planetary-theory/

  50. Greg Goodman says:

    Orbital Period (Earth) 1 year
    ————————————————- = Average Spin Rate (Sun) 0.0843 years = 30.79 day
    Orbital Period (Jupiter) 11.86 years

    Sorry, that does not work any better than comment you have here. The left-hand side is a dimensionless ratio, the right is of units time. (Please don’t try Earth’s period squared to fix the dimensions ;) ) And why would the ratio be any more relevant that the reciprocal?

    This result is just a numerical coincidence, it has no physical meaning.

    You could justify using half the period IF you want to claim it is a tidal effect. I thought part of your proposition was that it was magnetic. However, if you double one frequency why not the other, isn’t that one tidal ??

    I’m not trying to rip this apart, I think there is some basic truth in the harmonic approach. However, I think you are falling into the trap of not recognising a lot of this is just numerical coincidence. Given enough periods and enough harmonic combinations you will have a large number of possible “results”, some of which will be fairly close to one or other of equally large number of periods that can be picked out any particular dataset.

    For example you have three periods from the sun here. Why not pick out the rotational period at 30 or 50 degrees as well? You could probably match those as well. Maybe bring in half the synodic period of J-V-E … You see my point?

    I follow Scafetta’s work with interest and have communicated with him.

    Since Bart’s analysis was on sun spots I think your claim that Scafetta’s paper on Earth climate ” cross-checked, validated, quantified” what you have here is frankly rather silly.

    Keep digging. I’m sure you are looking in the right place but I think you need to be more self-sensoring to avoid wasting effort chasing shadows and seeing results that are nothing more than numerical coincidences.

    best regards,

  51. tallbloke says:

    Hello again Greg,
    The mechanism which connects the orbital periods of planets and the rotation rate of the Sun is called spin-orbit coupling, and it operates via the solar wind and heliomagnetic field. The variations organise themselves along the Parker spiral. I think the direct gravitational and tidal effect is operative too, it’s not a ‘one or the other’ scenario.

    The Sun’s rotation period at 60 degrees is also it’s average rotation period betwen the polar and equatorial spin rates.

    I think your claim that Scafetta’s paper on Earth climate ” cross-checked, validated, quantified” what you have here is frankly rather silly.

    I think you must be reading a different Scafetta paper to the one I linked for you. I’m referring to:

    Multi-scale harmonic model for solar and climate cyclical variation
    throughout the Holocene based on Jupiter–Saturn tidal frequencies plus the
    11-year solar dynamo cycle
    Journal of Atmospheric and Solar-Terrestrial Physics

    Nicola Scafetta
    ACRIM (Active Cavity Radiometer Solar Irradiance Monitor Lab) & Duke University, Durham, NC 27708, USA

    Received 29 October 2011. Revised 17 February 2012. Accepted 22 February 2012. Available online 8 March 2012.

    Abstract

    The Schwabe frequency band of the Zurich sunspot record from 1749 to 2011 is found to be made of three major cycles with periods of about 9.98, 10.9 and 11.86 years. The side frequencies appear to be closely related to the spring tidal period of Jupiter and Saturn (range between 9.5-10.5 years, and median 9.93 years) and to the tidal sidereal period of Jupiter (about 11.86 years). The central cycle may be associated to a quasi 11-year solar dynamo cycle that appears to be approximately synchronized to the average of the two planetary frequencies. A simplified harmonic constituent model based on the above two planetary tidal frequencies and on the exact dates of Jupiter and Saturn planetary tidal phases, plus a theoretically deduced 10.87-year central cycle reveals complex quasi-periodic interference/beat patterns. The major beat periods occur at about 115, 61 and 130 years, plus a quasi-millennial large beat cycle around 983 years. We show that equivalent synchronized cycles are found in cosmogenic records used to reconstruct solar activity and in proxy climate records during the entire Holocene (last 12,000 years) up to now. The quasi-secular beat oscillations hindcast reasonably well the known prolonged periods of low solar activity during the last millennium such as the Oort, Wolf, Spörer, Maunder and Dalton minima as well as the seventeen ∼115-year long oscillations found in a detailed temperature reconstruction of the Northern Hemisphere covering the last 2000 years. Finally, the harmonic model herein proposed reconstructs the prolonged solar minima that occurred during 1900–1920 and 1960–1980 and the secular solar maxima around 1940–1950 and 1995–2005, which agrees with some solar proxy model and with the ACRIM TSI satellite composite. The model forecasts a new prolonged solar minimum during 2020–2040, which is stressed by the minima of both the 61 and 115-year reconstructed cycles. Finally, the model predicts that during low solar activity periods, the solar cycle length tends to be longer, as observed in solar and climate proxy records. These results clearly indicate that both solar and climate oscillations are linked to planetary motion and, furthermore, their timing can be reasonably hindcast and forecast. The demonstrated geometrical synchronicity between solar and climate data patterns with the proposed solar/planetary harmonic model rebuts a major critique (by Smythe and Eddy, 1977) of the theory of planetary tidal influence on the Sun. Other qualitative discussions are added about the plausibility of a planetary influence on solar activity.

    The full paper is available at the link I provided in my previous comment. All the planetary periods it mentions have been previously determined here at the talkshop by P.A. Semi, Ian Wilson, Vukcevic, Tim C and myself, Gerry Pease, Paul Vaughan, and several other contributors. Nicola has done a great job pulling together some of the disparate information available in posts here and validating it with his model.

    I follow Scafetta’s work with interest and have communicated with him.

    Nicola and I are in regular email contact. His last comment here was two days ago.

    Cheers

    TB

  52. [...] the sunspot number by talkshop contributor ‘Bart’ and used in the subsequent posting on Jupiter and Saturn’s relationship with the solar cycle and independently confirmed by  Scafetta 2012a[7] are [...]

  53. terrahertz says:

    I wonder if anyone here is aware of the recently discovered variations in unstable isotope decay rates, which are statistically coupled to several solar system periods, including solar rotation, Earth’s orbit, and even the lunar orbit. Google ‘variable nuclear decay rates’. It’s naturally perplexing quite a few people. So far no satisfactory explanation has been proposed, though solar neutrino flux influences seems to have been ruled out.

    Anyway, in the context of the solar cycle spin coupling to planets, it doesn’t seem to have occurred to anyone that whatever effect is slightly modulating isotope decay rates on Earth probably also influences the statistical reaction paths of fusion processes, AND probably is an active effect at the Sun too. Where the net effects could be quite significant.

    So that’s another potential cause and effect tangle around the the solar activity variations, involving some fundamental physical process we don’t as yet have a clue about.

    Personally, my guess re the varying decay rates is… scalar wave noise, generated by rapid local mass density variations in the Sun. With the background scalar wave spectra and level affecting one or more of the ‘fundamental’ constants involved in nuclear scale interactions. But that’s woo-woo stuff, not science. So far.