We know the moon changes our tides, but can it also change our rainfall? Could the moon also cause tides in the atmosphere? Some researchers have found such periodic movements in air above 3000m. Some have suggested that the moon drives the cyclical shifts in the Length of Day (LOD) that occur on a fortnightly and seasonal basis.
Ian Wilson has been scouring the data quietly for years, following these ideas, and has found a link between lunar cycles and the sub tropical high pressure ridge that occurs in summer over the East Coast of Australia. He noticed there were 9.4 and 3.8 year cycles which match periods in spring tidal cycles. What matters is how close the full moon is to perhelion (the closest point Earth comes to the Sun). It’s yet another piece of the puzzle that the IPCC favoured models ignore.
The lunar forces are, not surprisingly, smaller than the solar one, and as the abstract points out: “it is not so much in what years do the lunar tides reach their maximum strength, but whether or not there are peaks in the strength of the lunar tides that re-occur at the same time within the annual seasonal cycle.”
It remains to be seen how his hypothesis stands up in the long run, but it’s yet another example of a genuine research avenues that are not being followed by government funded researchers who are heavily funded to find connections between CO2 and climate, but not so much to explore all the competing possibilities. Only open research and genuine curiosity will help us to truly predict the climate, inasmuch as it is possible to do so. Farmers, people living in flood zones, town planners, and dam managers desperately need models that predict the climate, instead of models that just give fashionable answers.
Long live the spirit of relentless curiosity.
Lunar Tides and the Long-Term Variation of the Peak Latitude Anomaly
of the Summer Sub-Tropical High Pressure Ridge over Eastern Australia
[PDF available from Bentham Open]
Guest Post by Ian Wilson
The main take-home conclusions from this paper are that:
- The most important influence upon the climate of Northern NSW and Southern Queensland after the La Nina/El Nino phenomenon is the Peak Latitude Anomaly for the Summer Sub-Tropical High Pressure Ridge over Eastern Australia (L(SA)).
- The interannual variability of L(SA) is major mechanism influencing inter-annual rainfall variability in Eastern Australia. It has also been shown to be connected to the inter-annular variability of the annual mean maximum temperatures, zonal westerly winds, meridional winds and mean air temperature.
- The long-term (i.e for periods of 2 to 20 years) variations of L(SA) are dominated by (significant) periodic signals at 9.4 (+0.4/-0.3) and 3.78 (+/- 0.06) years.
- L(SA) systematically moves away from the Equator as the angle between the Earth-Sun axis and the line-of-nodes of the Lunar orbit (at the time of perihelion) decreases. The magnitude of the movement of the mean summer peak latitude anomaly can amount to 1 degree of latitude over the 9.3 year semi-draconic spring tidal cycle.
- L(SA) moves towards the Equator as the number of days (to the nearest full day) that New/Full is from Perihelion decreases. The magnitude of the movement of the mean summer peak latitude anomaly can amount to 0.7 degree of latitude over the 3.8 year peak spring tidal cycle.
- The 9.4 year signal in L(SA) is in-phase with the draconic spring tidal cycle, while the phase of the 3.8 year signal in L(SA) is retarded by one year compared to the 3.8 year peak spring tidal cycle.
- This paper supports the conclusion that long-term changes in the lunar tides, in combination with the more dominant solar-driven seasonal cycles, play an important role in determining the observed inter-annual to decadal variations of L(SA).
- The IPCC does not take into account the important effects upon climate of long-term lunar atmospheric tides.
This study looks for evidence of a correlation between long-term changes in the lunar tidal forces and the interannual to decadal variability of the peak latitude anomaly of the summer (DJF) subtropical high pressure ridge over Eastern Australia (LSA) between 1860 and 2010. A simple “resonance” model is proposed that assumes that if lunar tides play a role in influencing LSA, it is most likely one where the tidal forces act in “resonance” with the changes caused by the far more dominant solar-driven seasonal cycles. With this type of model, it is not so much in what years do the lunar tides reach their maximum strength, but whether or not there are peaks in the strength of the lunar tides that re-occur at the same time within the annual seasonal cycle. The “resonance” model predicts that if the seasonal peak lunar tides have a measurable effect upon LSA then there should be significant oscillatory signals in LSA that vary in-phase with the 9.31 year draconic spring tides, the 8.85 year perigean spring tides, and the 3.80 year peak spring tides. This study identifies significant peaks in the spectrum of LSA at 9.4 (+0.4/
Jennifer Marohasy has also posted an announcement of this paper for those who are interested in other comments there too.