Good morning/afternoon/evening - I am Raymond Kuntz, astronomy student in Mr. Adkins astronomy class. I have chosen the Maunder Minimum as my topic. I am looking at:
a) What is the "Little Ice Age"
b) What is the "Maunder Minimum"
c) Are early Solar observations acurate and trustworthy
d) Why do fewer sunspots coorespond to a cooler year?
e) Other causes for climate change

The Maunder Minimum - This has been of personal interest to me for many years, since I first started hiking in the Sierra Nevada Mountains (mid 1960's, dang I am getting old). I remember wandering around in the middle of summer and seeing some great glaciers, and hearing stories from people about how even bigger the glaciers were. As the years (and time) went by I did notice the glaciers getting smaller, then reading about "The Little Ice Age". In an early 1970's article in Scientific American there was an article about "The Maunder Minimum", a period of time with no or little Sun Spot activity. This corresponded to part of the period of time called "The Little Ice Age". This link has very good background information about the Little Ice Age.
Read March 13, 2007
General Audience


What is the Maunder Minimum? Wikipedia has one of the best topics about what the Maunder Minimum is, along with great links to other sites for more information. This site has very good graphs and tables showing sunspot numbers and variations during this time period. As far as I can tell the information is up to date, and is in line with information on other sites, and in a few books I have.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maunder_Minimum .
Read March 13, 2007
General Audience



Part of the discussion about the magnitude of just how many sunspots were visible during 1645 to 1715 is the quality of solar observations. Counting Sunspots was new, the telescope was only recently being used for solar observations. The following site describes possible problems with sunspot record keeping. The paper also talks about using Carbon 14 data from tree rings to show whether there was signficant sunspot activity, or none, and this not just corresponding to the Maunder Minimum. This is a very interesting article. I am looking into some of the cited references.
http://www.stsci.edu/stsci/meetings/lisa3/beckmanj.html
Read March 17, 2007
General Audience

For me one very interesting mystery is why if there were no sunspots would this cause a cooling of the earth. I did find a few sites which kind of explain this, and yet I still think it is a mystery. This site does a pretty good job of a basic explination and also includes a link called "Determining the Climate Record". It would be good to follow this like after reading about why fewer sunspots cause a cooling of the earth.
http://www2.sunysuffolk.edu/mandias/lia/possible_causes.html
Read March 20, 2007
General Audience

There are many informative articles, some not such an easy read, but still very full of information. The "Journal of Climate" (published by the American Meteorological Society) article is not at all an easy read, it is somewhat advanced and if you can get through it I think you will be amazed.
http://www.climate.unibe.ch/~stocker/papers/yoshimori05jc.pdf
Read March 22, 2007
Intermediate to Advanced Audience

I have been very interested since the 3'rd grade about climate change. For me this is about why the earth's climate might heat up, cool down, why it might stay the same for however long it might stay the same. I remember way back in time to my 3'rd grade year going to New York, seeing the "Finger Lakes", and being told they were carved out of Glaciers. I wondered "dang how cool would that be to be here on top of 7,000 feet of ice". This link is from the Intergovermental Panel on Climate Change. It is excellent, and explains in detail how scientists know the climate is changing. It would be interesting to look back at the Maunder Minimum and find correlations to what this report details.
IPCC Climate Change
Read April 10, 2007
Audience General to Intermediate