New Science 22: Solar TSI leads Earth’s temperature with an 11 year delay

I found this very interesting paper on Jo Nova’s blog. Not sure I understand the details, but want to share with readers. I have always been puzzled by the apparent step function in global temperatures like the one that occurred in 1977. Is delay the answer?


Figure 1: Global temperature and 11-year delayed TSI, both 11-year smoothed, have mainly trended together. (For the composite TSI from standard sources replaced by Leif Svalgaard’s reconstruction)

For decades, people have been looking to see if the Sun controlled our climate but the message was perplexingly muddy. In the long run, solar activity appears linked to surface temperatures on Earth. (Solar activity was at a record high during the second half of the 20th century when temperatures were also high.) But when we look closely, firstly the solar peaks don’t exactly coincide with the surface temperature peaks, and secondly, the extra energy supplied during the solar peaks is far too small to do much warming. So how could changes in surface temperature be due to the Sun?

A few researchers noted an esoteric correlation of long solar cycles with lower temperatures in the next solar cycle, but mostly those papers were left on the shelf, ignored. Dr David Evans’ notch-delay solar delay theory can explain this odd pattern.

To unravel the connections David took a new approach which cleared out the dead-end complexity of the current climate research. Instead of trying to predict everything from a bottom up detailed approach, he worked “top-down”, treating the Earth as a black box, as a simple Energy-In-Energy-Out type problem, and used the kind of maths that makes modern electronics work. It was an odd combination of factors that came together: David would have to be the only professional modeller on Earth who has a high level PhD in Fourier transforms, experience in electrical engineering in Silicon Valley, and a science blogger as a wife to focus him on this problem (and raise barely enough funds to pay the bills while he worked — it’s been three years full time work now).

This was an Oooh-look-at-that moment. Eleven Years?!

The light in the darkness was this extraordinary pattern that turned up in the Fourier analysis. It lit up a strange path, and following it uncovered the papers that had been largely ignored. Suddenly the disparate observations which had made no sense in conventional models fitted the new theory.

The light on the new path was finding a “notch” filter (it’s a common garden-thing for an electrical engineer, but probably unknown to climate scientists). That notch filter was published here 18 months ago. With one minor proviso, almost all that work there remains intact, and stronger. The proviso is that at the time we thought the notch guaranteed a delay, but we now know that while notch filters can work with a delay, it’s not obligatory. That difference is mostly immaterial now, because the evidence found for a delay turned out to be so strong.

Full paper and discussion are HERE.



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