Giorgieva et al: Planetary Tidal Effects on Solar Activity

Posted: January 10, 2011 by tallbloke in solar system dynamics

A recent paper by Giorgieva et al looks at tidal forces on the Sun caused by the planets. Leif Svalgaard and many researchers looking into planetary – solar linkage mechanisms dismiss tidal forces as too small. However Giorgieva et al find them sufficient to cause the observed speed of meridional flow on the solar surface, and derive an impressively good correlation between tidal force and solar activity levels.

Fig.7 demonstrated a very good correspondence between the planetary tidal force (solid line) and the amplitude of the sunspot cycle (dash-ed line), with the Dalton minimum (the beginning of 19th century) and Gleissberg minimum (end of 19th and beginning of 20th century) coinciding with low tidal forces during the surface flux transport, and the secular solar maxima in the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries – with maxima in the tidal forces during these periods.

Please also review an earlier thread on this blog heavily contributed to by ‘Semi’, who is a contributing author on this paper.

The paper is available here:

Many thanks to contributor Roy Martin for providing the copy.

  1. racookpe1978 says:

    The key – the prize if you will – will be earned by he (or she) who determines the reason that the sun is following this 66 year Triple-Sunspot-Cycle.

    THree high cycles, three low, three high, three low …

    No, the sunspot cycle is not by itself the “cause” of the underlaying physics/electrodynamic control of the suns fields and radiation. It IS deeply related (somehow) by the same physical principle that is controlling the magnetic field swaps and the sunspot cycle. But why is there a 3x sunspot cycle link? I don’t know yet.

    Just as the GCM simulations fail by modifying the output by modulating the 11 year sunspot cycle (they need to use this 66 year cycle!) a simple analysis that tries to link radiation received to just the 11 year cycle will fail.

  2. Tim Channon says:

    This is a very interesting paper.

  3. tallbloke says:

    It certainly is. And I know how to improve the correlation. 😉
    I’ve emailed Semi to see if he is interested in testing my idea.

  4. Gerry says:

    I have, below, tabulated the barycentric solar orbit periods, periapsis to periapsis, from 1258 AD to 2145 AD. Note that the periods of the three orbits identified with each grand minimum always add up to 62 years. Each grand minimum starts a few years before the end of a long period orbit, has a short period orbit in the middle, and ends with another long period orbit. If you plot these periods on a bar chart, you will see some very interesting cycles and trends:)

    Solar Orbit Period (years)
    1258-1275 17.1
    1275-1298 Wolf 23.4 Temp Trend
    1298-1314 ” 15.4
    1314-1337 ” 23.5
    1337-1354 17
    1354-1376 22
    1376-1395 19
    1395-1415 20
    1415-1437 22
    1437-1454 16.4
    1454-1477 Sporer 23.6
    1477-1493 ” 15.4
    1493-1516 ” 23.3
    1516-1533 17
    1533-1555 22
    1555-1573 18.6
    1573-1594 20.5
    1594-1617 23 UP
    1617-1633 15.7 UP
    1633-1656 Maunder 23.7 FLAT
    1656-1673 ” 17 DOWN
    1673-1695 ” 22 FLAT
    1695-1712 17 UP
    1712-1752 19 UP, FLAT
    1752-1773 21 DOWN
    1773-1796 Dalton 23 DOWN
    1796-1811 ” 15.3 UP
    1811-1835 ” 23.7 UP
    1835-1851 16 DOWN
    1851-1874 23 UP
    1874-1891 17 FLAT
    1891-1912 21 UP
    1912-1930 18 UP
    1930-1951 21 FLAT, DOWN
    1951-1975 24 DOWN
    1975-1990 15.1 UP
    1990-2014 Current 23.6 UP, DOWN
    2014-2030 ” 16.2
    2030-2052 ” 22
    2052-2070 18
    2070-2091 21
    2091-2108 17
    2108-2130 22
    2130-2145 14.9

  5. tallbloke says:

    Thanks Gerry. Did you mean to post this on the Wolff and Patrone thread? If so, repost it there an I’ll remove this one. Also, 1712-1752 seems to be a double period?


  6. Gerry says:

    I deliberately posted it on the Georgieva thread because of the 66-year period discussion (the three barycentric orbit periods incompassing each grand minimum add up to 62 years in each case, though I was looking for that 66 year pattern). No need to repost it on the Wolff & Patrone thread, although it is true that their model inspired me to revisit an orbit period examination that I had first done a couple of years ago.

    Your bar chart is correct, I believe. Because of the odd retrograde behavior in the last part of many of these solar orbits, you can technically break up quite a few of the orbit periods shown into two segments at the point where there appears to be a “mini-periapsis.” Though the orbits bend in slightly towards the barycenter at these retrograde points, I do not consider them to be actual orbit periapsis points.

    It was very astute of you to notice one of these “mini-periapses.” I know that Geoff has a particular interest in the Dalton Minimum. I am more interested in comparing the current minimum with the Maunder Minimum because that is the particular Grand Minimum of the ones shown on your bar chart that is most like our current minimum. This is true not only with respect to barycentric orbit periods, but also wrt barycentric radius vector plots and barycentric angular momentum plots.

  7. Gerry says:

    Oops! Now I see what you mean. I missed an actual periapsis, it seems. I have to go back and check the ephemeris data again, but I won’t have the correct result right away.

  8. Gerry says:

    It does appear that you plotted it correctly; i.e. instead of
    1712-1752 19,
    I should have had two lines:
    1712-1731 19
    1731-1752 21

    Thanks for catching my error and posting the correct plot. By the way, if you look closely at the solar ephemeris data, the retrograde “mini-periapsis” points can be seen on some orbits, but in this case there was an actual periapsis at 1731.

  9. tallbloke says:

    I wonder what happened to solar cycle 19 in Georgieva’s plot. Gerry is in exalted company. 🙂

    I haven’t heard anything back from Semi, so I have scaled off the plot to obtain values for the tidal acceleration. I’m going to use them to test an idea I have for improving the correlation. I think it is going to help build evidence for several small forces working in concert to produce a big force.

  10. Semi says:

    Hello. I’m sorry for responding that late (every start of year-quarter I’m heavilly busy with release of medical software update), and I even could not open the PDF (requires a newer version of Acrobat). (BTW: I’m now much shorter on time than previously, so I follow your site only passively from email articles, sorry…)

    This work has been written arround 04/2009 and I rather thought they discarded it, didn’t know it may take that long between writing and publishing. My part in this work is rather minor – I’ve performed the Vector tidal calculations, but rather disagree little with the results:

    The tidal forces, when summed together, reveal ONLY the Jupiter sinusoid. Next variability comes from Mercury, but it is a high-frequency one and gets averaged on longer periods. The “alignments” of other planets make negligible changes. If you average the tidal data enough, you get just the 11.86-year Jupiter sinusoid – that’s exactly what K.Georgieva did, and compared that Jupiter sinusoid with the TIMING of sunspot cycles, saying, that the amount of Jupiter influence just after the cycle maxima determines the next cycle strength… It even need not be tidal influence (by my opinion), it can be just ANY influence, that is more strong, when Jupiter is near, eg. a magnetic one etc… (they have selected and confirmed just the north-south horizontal (surface) part of the vector (3D vector is split into vertical, longitudinal horizontal and meridional (toward-pole) horizontal components and only the meridional horizontal component is used), but after such a strong averaging it does not matter much, which one you choose, to get this same sinusoid…)

    The main goal of K.Georgieva’s work is choosing only some parts from the sinusoid (from Sunspot maxima to Geomagnetic maxima on decline phase), and I even don’t know these timings exactly… (so I don’t know how to combine this result with the SSB-Z component, as you requested…)

    I may provide you with exact tidal force data, either in 5°-spacing surface grid, or summed per latitude circles with 5° or other spacing. The forces are computed by Oceanographic tidal vector equations, at each surface point is vector-summed influence from all planets, the vector is split into components and some or all may be outputed, with daily stepping, then averaged together per month or year…
    (Some charts are already included in my work , but I may provide another format and/or variables upon request… My EphView program to calculate the data is freely available, but there is no user manual and only very small Help in the program, sorry…)

    One more property of tidal forces – they are perfectly symmetrical on each hemisphere, just because there are 2 opposing tidal bulges below each planet, and if one tidal bulge is on north hemisphere, the other one is on south hemisphere, and after averaging per latitude circle it is perfectly symmetrical…
    The justification for per-latitude summing: the Sun is rotating below the planets, so any influence, that takes more than 28 days, is spread arround the surface…

  11. tallbloke says:

    Hi Semi and thank you for spending the time to comment here. I think that to get an idea of a possible interaction between tidal/electromagnetic effects and Ray Tomes possible relativistic effect in the z-axis, I will study the hemispheric sunspot asymmetry to see if any clues can be found. Timo Niroma thought that the changing Jupiter -Sun distance may be important, as his work shows that solar minimum often occurs near Jupiter Perihelion. Perihelion also coincides with the maximum distance below the solar equatorial plane in Jupiters case and with Neptune and Uranus. But Saturn is different, with the Perihelion being offset a long way from maximum declination. This too is worth studying I think.

    Thank you for the offer of numerical output, I will email you regarding this when I have completed the model of the Wolff-Patrone mechanism.

  12. There is a serious error in the paper. When computing the tidal force, G. neglects the fact that the solar surface quickly readjusts itself around the tidally deformed potential, The force cannot be integrated along a solar day, to produce a velocity, as is done in the paper.

    The tidal buldge is very little, 7 mm fpr Venus and Jupiter, much less for the other planets, and the velocity you get is that divided the solar angular velocity. Nothing, compared to the meters per second that G. assumes.

    Jupter magnetic field as seen on the Sun is also negligible. Especially if you compare it to the solar magnetic field.

  13. P.G. Sharrow says:

    Gianni Comoretto says:
    March 20, 2011 at 10:23 pm

    The main effect is traveling horizontal with the suns rotation not vertical in a push and pull action of gravity vrs gravity in one spot. pg