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©2002 by Richard Nolle

WOW!OCT 14, 2002 - Sunspot Cycles is systems engineer Jean-Pierre Desmoulins' exposition on a link between sunspots and Venus, Earth and Jupiter syzygies (alignments). Professor Desmoulins is French, and it's obvious in the reading that English is a second language for him; but he communicates adequately nonetheless. (My French should be a tenth as good as his English.) His point is that tidal forces raised on the Sun by (heliocentric) Earth, Venus and Jupiter alignments (conjunctions and oppositions) may be a sufficient explanation for the 11 year cycle of sunspots and the 22 year cycle of solar magnetic oscillation. These planets in particular (along with Mercury) have the strongest tidal force on the Sun, although Desmoulins makes the case that Mercury's faster relative motion with respect to the Sun tends to weaken its effective tidal influence. (Don't miss the finer points toward the end of Desmoulins' "simple explanation" section!) If nothing else, Sunspot Cycles deserves consideration as one theoretical model which could explain how configurations within our solar system can affect conditions here on Earth, through the medium of the Sun and its effect on geophysical systems.

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