A woman and a dog make their way in the heavy snow at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan January 22, 2018. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
A woman and a dog make their way in the heavy snow at the Imperial Palace in Tokyo, Japan January 22, 2018. REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon Reuter

A team of scientists has revealed that a solar minimum is going on in the earth in 2018. As per these scientists, the sun has been already free of sunspots for a total of 133 days this year. It should be noted that only 243 days have been passed in this year so far and it indicates that the sun has been blank for a majority of days in 2018.

Usually, the sun follows 11-year cycles where it reaches the peak solar maximum followed by a solar minimum. During days of solar maximum, the sun gives maximum heat to the earth, and its surface will be littered with hot spots. On the other hand, very less heat will be emitted during times of solar minimum. Experts believe that the less heat during solar minimum is due to the decrease in magnetic waves.

Earlier, it was speculated that the sun will go into a solar minimum only after 2020. But now, the solar minimum has hit much earlier than previously thought which is undoubtedly an alarming news. Many people believe that the solar minimum will trigger a mini ice age on the planet.

"The sun is spotless again. For the 133rd day this year, the face of the sun is blank. To find a year with fewer sunspots, you have to go back to 2009 when the sun was experiencing the deepest solar minimum in a century. Solar minimum has returned, bringing extra cosmic rays, long-lasting holes in the sun's atmosphere, and strangely pink auroras," wrote the researchers in the website spaceweather.com.

It should be noted that a solar minimum had triggered a mini ice age on earth beginning from 1645. The ice age lasted for 70 years, and things became normal only in 1715. During this ice age period, temperature all over the planet was reduced by 1.3 degree Celsius which finally resulted in the shortage of food crops.

Many experts believe that the blank sun which started showing up in 2018 is just an indication, and things will turn worse in the coming years triggering a possible ice age in the planet in the near future.