Astronomers will unveil a "major result" on Tuesday (June 14) regarding the sun's 11-year sunspot cycle.
The announcement will be made at a solar physics conference in New Mexico, according to an alert released today (June 10) by the American Astronomical Society. The discussion will begin at 1 p.m. EDT (1700 GMT).
Currently, the sun is in the midst of its Solar Cycle 24, the 24th cycle since observations began.
Recently, the sun has begun rousing itself from an extended quiescent period. Over the past several months, our star has unleashed several immensely powerful flares and sent huge volumes of solar plasma rocketing toward Earth, in massive eruptions known as coronal mass ejections (CMEs).
In the near future, the flares and CMEs should get more frequent and more intense. Researchers predict that solar activity will peak sometime in 2013 or 2014.
Result of Announcement:
New Insights on How Solar Minimums Affect Earth
by Karen C. Fox, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
Sun's Fading Spots Signal Big Drop in Solar Activity
by Denise Chow, Space.com
Lewis Page: Earth may be headed into a mini Ice Age within a decade
David Whitehouse: Next Solar Cycle May Not Happen
Is the Sunspot Cycle About to Stop?
by Jay M. Pasachoff
Next solar cycle may be weakest for centuries
by Kate Taylor, TG Daily
Lawrence Solomon: NASA scientist reverses sunspot prediction, bolstering global cooling theory