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Origin of grand minima in Sunspot cycles

Choudhuri, Arnab Rai and Karak, Bidya Binay (2012) Origin of grand minima in Sunspot cycles. In: Physical Review Letters, 109 (17). pp. 171103-1.

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.109.171103


One of the most striking aspects of the 11-year sunspot cycle is that there have been times in the past when some cycles went missing, a most well-known example of this being the Maunder minimum during 1645-1715. Analyses of cosmogenic isotopes (C-14 and Be-10) indicated that there were about 27 grand minima in the last 11 000 yrs, implying that about 2.7% of the solar cycles had conditions appropriate for forcing the Sun into grand minima. We address the question of how grand minima are produced and specifically calculate the frequency of occurrence of grand minima from a theoretical dynamo model. We assume that fluctuations in the poloidal field generation mechanism and in the meridional circulation produce irregularities of sunspot cycles. Taking these fluctuations to be Gaussian and estimating the values of important parameters from the data of the last 28 solar cycles, we show from our flux transport dynamo model that about 1-4% of the sunspot cycles may have conditions suitable for inducing grand minima.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publication: Physical Review Letters
Publisher: American Physical Society
Additional Information: Copyright of this article belongs to American Physical Society.
Department/Centre: Division of Physical & Mathematical Sciences > Physics
Date Deposited: 19 Feb 2013 05:33
Last Modified: 19 Feb 2013 05:33
URI: http://eprints.iisc.ac.in/id/eprint/45374

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