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Post Info TOPIC: Gustav Spörer (1822 - 1895)


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RE: Gustav Spörer (1822 - 1895)
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Title: Gustav Spörer Was Not a Perfect Observer: Failure of the Active Day Fraction Reconstruction of Sunspot Group Numbers
Author: Leif Svalgaard

We show that the Active-Day-Fraction calibration method (Willamo et al. [2017]) fails for Gustav Spörer's sunspot group observations. Spörer was labelled a 'perfect observer' on account of his 'observational threshold SS area' being determined to be equal to zero, based on the assumption that the observer can see and report all the groups with the area larger than SS, while missing all smaller groups. So, Spörer could apparently, according to the ADF calibration method, see and report all groups, regardless of size and should never miss any. This suggests a very direct test: compute the yearly average group count for both Spörer and the 'perfect observer' exemplar, the Royal Greenwich Observatory (RGO), and compare them. They should be identical within a reasonable (very small) error margin. We find that they are not and that RGO generally reported 45% more groups than Spörer, and that therefore, the ADF-method is not generally applicable

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Friederich Wilhelm Gustav Spörer (23 October 1822 - 7 July 1895) was a German astronomer.
He is noted for his studies of sunspots and sunspot cycles. In this regard he is often mentioned together with Edward Maunder. Spörer was the first to note a prolonged period of low sunspot activity from 1645 to 1715. This period is known as the Maunder Minimum.

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