Cosmic Dust

5 Apr 2012

'Cosmic Dust in the Terrestrial Atlmosphere' was the focus of a meeting at the National Academy in Manchester on March 30th. An EU research grant has been provided to investigate the cosmic dust impact over the next five years (scientists from Leeds University, from Germany and from the US are involved). See www.dailygalaxy.com blog April 4th and www.science.nasa.gov and the Royal Astronomical Society web site. The project was mentioned a few days ago but cosmic dust is clearly a very important component of climate change - or it might be. It is of course very important for the future prospects of the Clube and Napier theory. If it has any wings that is. According to a group of British astronomers in the 1980s and 1990s (not just Clube and Napier) the Little Ice Age, for example, came about as a result of heavy loading of the upper atmosphere by cosmic dust, a theory at odds with the consensus view that it involved low numbers of sun spots. It may be just a coincidence that in the latter half of the 17th century there was a minimum number of sun spots - and this research may provide some of the answers (but that is not the object of the research as such as it is CAGW orientated). We have had a decline in sun spot numbers over the last few years - during the current solar cycle. Temperatures have not fallen - certainly nowhere near what they were in the Little Ice Age. It may be that there is a time lag - but sun spots have been few and far between for several years. It is also expected the next solar cycle will have even fewer sun spots than the present cycle and some CAGW sceptics are thinking in terms of a dramatic plunge in the global temperature - but there is little evidence of this at the moment. If the next solar cycle is indeed nearly absent of sun spots and then the Sun is providing the perfect experiment in the forthcoming decade or so.