Posted by BC on March 18th, 2010
The current solar cycle has proved to be different from what was predicted. We have not seen the many sunspots and other activity we hoped to see, but new discoveries have been made to help in find out what is going on.
It seems that the Sun’s “conveyor belt”, the activity that moves plasma from the lower areas to the visible surface and back around, has been speeding up. The “conveyor belt” not only moves material around, but it seems that it also disrupts forming features like sunspots.
The motion moves solar plasma from the equatorial region to the polar region, and the speeding up of the motion may be what is causing a solar cycle that is much quieter than expected. Research is continuing to find out more information to help put the pieces of the puzzle together.
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