Ian Wilson: Long-Term Lunar Atmospheric Tides in the Southern Hemisphere

Posted: August 6, 2013 by tallbloke in atmosphere, climate, Clouds, general circulation, Natural Variation, Ocean dynamics, solar system dynamics
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This open access paper from Ian Wilson is the culmination of exhaustive work on surveying terrestrial climate data and relating it to celestial motion. Co-authored with Nicolai Sidorenkov, it is another major step forward in verifying the connections between Earth’s climatic change and Solar System Dynamics. Next we’ll be looking at Ian’s Subsequent paper: ‘Are Global Mean Temperatures Significantly Affected by Long-Term Lunar Atmospheric Tides?’

Long-Term Lunar Atmospheric Tides in the Southern Hemisphere
Ian R. G. Wilson 1 and Nikolay S. Sidorenkov *,2
1 The Liverpool Plains Daytime Astronomy Centre, Curlewis, NSW, Australia
2 Hydrometcenter of Russia, Bolshoy Predtechensky 11-13, 123242 Moscow, Russian Federation, Russia
The Open Atmospheric Science Journal, 2013, Volume 7 Bentham Science
Fig. (1a). The NOAA SST anomaly map for the 25th of January 1981.

The longitudinal shift-and-add method is used to show that there are N=4 standing wave-like patterns in the summer (DJF) mean sea level pressure (MSLP) and sea-surface temperature (SST) anomaly maps of the Southern Hemisphere between 1947 and 1994. The patterns in the MSLP anomaly maps circumnavigate the Earth in 36, 18, and 9 years. This indicates that they are associated with the long-term lunar atmospheric tides that are either being driven by the 18.0 year Saros cycle or the 18.6 year lunar Draconic cycle. In contrast, the N=4 standing wave-like patterns in the SST anomaly maps circumnavigate the Earth once every 36, 18 and 9 years between 1947 and 1970 but then start circumnavigating the Earth once every 20.6 or 10.3 years between 1971 and 1994. The latter circumnavigation times indicate that they are being driven by the lunar Perigee-Syzygy tidal cycle. It is proposed that the different drift rates for the patterns seen in the MSLP and SST anomaly maps between 1971 and 1994 are the result of a reinforcement of the lunar Draconic cycle by the lunar Perigee-Syzygy cycle at the time of Perihelion. It is claimed that this reinforcement is part of a 31/62/93/186 year lunar tidal cycle that produces variations on time scales of 9.3 and 93 years. Finally, an N=4 standing wave-like pattern in the MSLP that circumnavigates the Southern Hemisphere every 18.6 years will naturally produce large extended regions of abnormal atmospheric pressure passing over the semi-permanent South Pacific sub- tropical high roughly once every ~ 4.5 years. These moving regions of higher/lower than normal atmospheric pressure will increase/decrease the MSLP of this semi-permanent high pressure system, temporarily increasing/reducing the strength of the East-Pacific trade winds. This may lead to conditions that preferentially favor the onset of La Nina/El Nino events.

  1. Ian Wilson says:


    Thank you for highlighting my atmospheric lunar tides paper. One advantage of living in the Southern Hemisphere is that climate system is dominated by the oceans [at least more so than the Northern Hemisphere]. This means that there is less disruption to the west-to-east movement of air masses in the mid-latitudes by the continents, allowing longitudinal patterns in the atmosphere to become more evident.

    It goes without saying, that the actual situation is far more complex than the simple model set out in this paper but, I believe that it is a reasonable first attempt to try and describe the effects on lunar-atmospheric tides on decadal to centennial time scales.

  2. Ian Wilson says:

    For those who are short on time but still interested in the content of the paper, please read the introduction (section 1), try to understand figures 5 and 8, and then skip to the conclusion.
    Its not much help but it may make the whole process less painful.

  3. Chaeremon says:

    @Ian Wilson, Lunar Atmospheric Tides is an extraordinary, exceptional piece of work and I want to thank you very much for making it available for open access.

    In my pet model (for unaided eyes observer) the moon’s orbital plane is inclined (a.k.a. draconic) +max,-max (northern, southern) every ~367.365 days; biennial from/to e.g. +max; plus: at least three yearly occurrences in the same week.

    Three of the lows in your Fig. (1a) seem to be matched, each by another draconic moon, each at around 221° ecliptic longitude (draconic advance per moon is slow) and each bounces at +max inclination. Coincidence?

  4. Ulric Lyons says:

    “In contrast, the N=4 standing wave-like patterns in the SST anomaly maps circumnavigate the Earth once every 36, 18 and 9 years between 1947 and 1970 but then start circumnavigating the Earth once every 20.6 or 10.3 years between 1971 and 1994.”

    That looks like changes in the frequency of solar forced events to me. From 1971 is very much in line with the solar cycle length then.

  5. Ian Wilson says:


    You haven’t appreciated the full implications of the conclusion. A reinforcement of the 18.6 year Draconian and 20.3 Perigee/Syzygy/Perihelion cycles implies that the drifting N=4 standing-wave-like MSLP pressure and SST anomalies that are seen between 1971 and 1994 should also be seen 93 years earlier between 1878 and 1901. A preliminary analysis of the earlier data indicates that this is indeed the case.

    This result was not included in the open sourced paper because of the paper’s excessive length and because it would take a considerable amount of work to bring the poorer quality earlier data up to scratch.

    [Note: The reason why we have SST and MSLP data (between 30 degrees and 50 degrees South) in the oceans as far back as 1878 is fact that the main sea trade routes linking Australia and NZ to the mother country had to pass around Cape Horn and the Cape of Good Hope. It simply boils down to a fortuitous accident of history that the sail ships of the day need the westerly winds of the Roaring-Forties and the Fierce-Fifties.]

  6. Ian Wilson says:

    Chaeremon said:

    “Three of the lows in your Fig. (1a) seem to be matched, each by another draconic moon, each at around 221° ecliptic longitude (draconic advance per moon is slow) and each bounces at +max inclination. Coincidence?”

    I would appreciate it if you could expand on this Chaeremon. Thanks

  7. Chaeremon says:

    @Ian Wilson. I looked from the Moon back to Earth (along the center-to-center) and noticed 3 successive moons at ~same ecliptic longitude ~221° position, each at the time of its +max inclination, and each at that time above a distinct low in Fig. (1a):

    1981/01/01 02:31:43 subcontinent India, a bit east
    1981/01/28 09:52:51 Brazil
    1981/02/24 17:17:49 Solomones

    Keeping in mind that Fig. (1a) is of date 1981/01/25, the lows may be situated “a bit” different at the 3 max inclination dates. But, better ask now than never.

    P.S. is there an online service (couldn’t find) from which Fig. (1a) exemplars can be downloaded by date?
    P.P.S. what tool are other people using for visualizing the center-to-center line (I mean, where its hits the Earth’s surface) at a particular date+time?

  8. Ian Wilson says:


    Thank you for the information -its details like these that need to tracked down to properly investigate lunar atmospheric tides.

    The map is available at :


    Sorry, I do not know of a tool that will do what you asked for in your P.S.S.
    You may have to develop your own.

  9. Ian Wilson says:


    A lot of the stuff that I have highlighted about the Sun, planets and the Earth’s climate
    have been found by looking at the evidence in a new frame of reference.

    If you able to find an appellate or a program that enables you to see the sub-lunar point on the Earth’s surface at any given time – let us know. We could all use such a useful program.

  10. Ian Wilson says:

    I made a submission to Australian Senate [Upper-House] this year that used some the results from this paper. The Senate report, entitled “Recent trends in and preparedness for extreme weather events”, is located here:


    Of course, after almost a year (funded by the tax-payer), the Senate committee could have written the report without consulting the public. All they did was regurgitate the views and concerns of the climate alarmists. Anyone who put in a submission that questioned the CSIRO’s chicken-little version of climate alarmism were completely ignored. Of course, what they don’t realize is that when their catastrophic forecasts fail to eventuate, submissions that questioned climate alarmism will be on-the-record – that way they cannot say that no one ever told them otherwise.

    A free copy of my submission (Number 106) is available at:


  11. Chaeremon says:

    Ian, thanks for the ftp link. Great stuff. Perhaps the images can be animated like in a film. I’ll look for this.

    The sub-lunar point on the Earth’s surface can be found, visually, with Home Planet by John Walker. It’s free software (runs on windows) and the source code is available.

    I was asking just for the case if somebody’s using an alternative; it’s always good to have more than one tool for comparison.

  12. Ian Wilson says:


    Thanks. I didn’t realize it but I already had a copy of this program on my computer.
    I will play with it to investigate the information that you gave me.

  13. Chaeremon says:

    Here is an animated .gif with the SST images from Dec 25 1980 to Mar 05 1981, and the 5 draconic moons (+max,-max inclination) are interleaved from their Home Planet screen shot:

    http://cdn.makeagif.com/media/8-11-2013/jUc4xu.gif (Tim, if possible please picturize width:480 height: 240, TIA, source is public http://makeagif.com/i/jUc4xu ).

    Please keep in mind that the SST picture frames are spaced (and cut off!) by 5 days in the calendar month, and the draconic moons are merely been inserted by their date.

    @Ian: can you suggest interesting dates for a longer sequence. I can make stop motion videos from this material.

  14. Ian Wilson says:


    If you look at figures 2a and 2b and Sequence A and B in table 1 you can work out the
    likely Southern summers (i.e. December, January and February – post 1981) where the N=4 SST patterns were most likely to have formed.

    These are the years 1989, 1992, 1997, 2001, 2007 and possibly 2010, although none appear to be as good as 1981.

  15. Ian Wilson says:


    The best N=4 SST patterns that I can find between 1981 and 1999 are:

    December 1988
    February 1992
    January & February 1997

    although the patterns still weakly appear outside of these times.

    Can I assume that you are testing the hypothesis that +/- max longitudes of the Moon
    correspond to cool SST points in the N=4 standing wave pattern?

  16. Chaeremon says:


    thank you for the date ranges of pattern, it is important to me that they relate to recognizable pattern in Lunar Atmospheric Tides, and not so much to possible noise (you said: weak pattern) in between which I cannot discern without knowing what to look for.

    I’m not sure how to parse “+/- max longitudes” correctly in your question, but I’m working along this hypothesis: the draconic +/- max is, in ecliptic coordinates, the +/- max lunar latitude° and therefore can be a signal with noticeable northern / southern component.

    I’m not looking at specific ecliptic longitude° at the moment (there be: planets …) but this can come on the radar at a later point in time.

  17. Ian Wilson says:


    There are four semi-stationary highs embedded in the (Southern) summer sub-tropical high pressure ridge. The three dominant ones are located on the eastern sides of the Sth Atlantic, Sth Indian and Sth Pacific (of Chile) oceans. The fourth much weaker one is usually located over the Nth Island of NZ all though it can move around from the Great Australian Bight all the way to the Solomon Islands.

    These “fixed’ centers of high pressure warm the parts of the Southern Ocean that are located on their western sides and cool the parts on their eastern sides. This naturally produces a fixed or stationary weak N=4 pattern in SST temperature in the Southern Ocean, cirm-navigating the Earth between about 30 and 50 degrees Sth latitude.

    The Atmospheric Lunar tides seem to have a similar moving N=4 standing-wave like structure that is superimposed upon the top of the stationary high pressure systems. When this moving pattern rotates over the top of the fixed semi-permanent highs, they (i.e the stationary highs) are either reinforced or weaken. This reinforcing or weakening of the semi-permanent highs (roughly every 9 years) affects the visibility of the N=4 standing wave like pattern seen in the Southern Ocean.

  18. Chaeremon says:


    thank you for the description of the four plus four objects, all the major points in one place 🙂

    I’ve put years 1981-1999 into my pet model for an overview, the diagram should be accessible here: Years 1981-1999, Spacing at Maxima: Luni-Solar Gait, Lunar Display Size and a brief description is below the picture.

    Your suggested years 1988,1992,1997 possibly compare to my model: my 1986 cluster begins in Aug and ends in Dec 1987, my 1992 cluster begins in Sept and ends in Aug 1993, my 1995 cluster begins in Aug and ends in Sept 1996. If I see this correctly, your years are either immediately before or after my clusters (can’t say this is a surprise since we both work with draconic and apsidal moons). But this may restrict the amount of comparison between SST images and sub-lunar points (or, render my venture futile).

  19. Ian,
    I have found that the Saros cycle is 241 lunar declinational cycles, and because I wanted to use a system that saves the four fold pattern of the lunar tidal bulge production in the atmosphere with out the 1 extra cycle per Saros cycle I use 240 lunar declinational cycles to compare periods of 6558 days long.

    When compositing the meteorological data into maps for the forecast site aerology.com shows the results with out the references to the standing wave pattern you have found, but I believe it shows the results of the compounding of the two patterns well enough to use as a daily weather forecast.

    I think the cause of the shifts in the 1971 to 1994 period is a direct result of the confounding of the lunar declinational tides with the outer planetary effects, as the synod conjunction of Neptune and Uranus occurred on April 20th in 1993, and the Earth synod with the pair on July 12th 1993, would indicate to me that the full effects of the alignment almost straight out from the galactic center, would have a strong effect on the patterns.

    I firmly believe that this is the influence most responsible, for the increased solar activity, and that the increased solar wind had ion scavenging effects of condensation neculi resulted in clearer (less cloudy) skies that resulted in the pulse in global warming the AGW people are blaming on CO2.

    I think that the planetary effects are responsible for most of the surges in ion content in the troposphere and the sever weather we had as a peak in Hurricanes until the maximum culmination extent (off of the equator) of the moon in 2005-2007, and the excess heat energy and ions were discharged as these tropical storms returned toward a normal balance.

    Currently the Neptune/Uranus close alignment is Synod with the earth on August 27th 2013 for Neptune and October 3rd for Uranus, and synod with Jupiter is on the 5th of January 2014. I expect these effects to increase the odds of heavy snow falls in the Northern Hemisphere and, dryer heat waves in Australia during these times.

    Keep up the good work!