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A Model of Cyclic Solar Activity

  • N. G. Basov
Part of the The Lebedev Physics Institute Series book series (LPIS)

Abstract

The first application of the extremely time-consuming method of inverse problems in the theory of oscillations [1] was to analyze the nature of the cyclic activity of the sun, and this is not by chance. The problem of finding the physical mechanism which controls this phenomenon occupies a special place in astrophysics. The beginning of the study of sunspots is one of the very first steps in astrophysics. Since the development of the telescope a vast amount of observational material has been accumulated and many articles and books have been published on this topic. The timeliness of this group of problems is now assured. But it cannot be said that even the qualitative basis for the mechanism of solar activity has been reliably explained yet. Furthermore, the flow of reports filling the astronomical journals about measurements of various modifications of the activity indices or about arithmetic manipulations of these indices without a clear statement of the purpose of these manipulations or often without a minimal logical foundation is rather unusual in the modern exact sciences and is reminiscent of zoology in the pre-Darwin period. At the same time (and largely independently of experimental work) the journals include discussions of logically ordered theoretical models of the sun’s activity which contradict one another even in the basic postulates. Thus there has naturally arisen a desire to investigate this group of problems and to first select anew and analyze the properties which are clearly inherent to cyclic solar activity while using as few a priori assumptions as possible. It is here that it is convenient to turn to the methods of inverse problems in the theory of oscillations or, more precisely, to a variant intended for the study of uncontrolled objects of unknown nature. This variant was called a “black box scheme without an input” in its own time although this name is now not fully correct.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • N. G. Basov
    • 1
  1. 1.P. N. Lebedev Physics InstituteAcademy of Sciences of the USSRMoscowUSSR

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