'Sleeping' sun could cause devastating new 'mini' ice age in Europe

Last Updated: Sun, Jan 19, 2014 09:15 hrs

Scientists have warned that the recent lack of activity in sun could lead to a new mini ice age, just like 17th century's Maunder Minimum, in European countries.

The new warning comes after stargazers saw an alarming fall in the number of explosions of gases on the Sun's surface when in fact it should be at the peak of its 11-year cycle of activity, the BBC reported.

Richard Harrison, head of space physics at the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire, told the publication that he has been a solar physicist for 30 years, and has never seen anything quite like this.

Harrison said that if you want to go back to see when the Sun was this inactive, you have got to go back about 100 years.

Meanwhile, Dr Lucie Green, from University College London's Mullard Space Science Laboratory, said that it would feel like the Sun is asleep, a very dormant ball of gas at the centre of the Solar System.

Green added that there is a very strong hint that the Sun is acting in the same way now as it did in the run-up to the Maunder Minimum, when freezing winters swept across Europe. (ANI)

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