Interpreting Be changes during the Maunder Minimum

Field, C. V., G. A. Schmidt, and D. Shindell (2009), Interpreting Be changes during the Maunder Minimum, J. Geophys. Res., 114, D02113, doi:10.1029/2008JD010578.

Beryllium-10 archives are important resources for understanding how solar activity may have varied in the past. Climate simulations using the Goddard Institute for Space Studies ModelE general circulation model are used to calibrate the impacts of production changes, solar forcings, and volcanic aerosol forcing on 10Be concentration during periods such as the Maunder Minimum (1645–1715 A.D.). We find that for the preindustrial period, production-related 10Be changes are the dominant signal in snow concentration, and that the effects of both solar and volcanic forcings on climate are relatively minor. Ambiguities in determining the observed changes in 10Be snow concentration during the Maunder Minimum complicate the process of estimating changes in the solar modulation strength during that time. Given those limitations, we estimate that the average value of the solar modulation parameter f was between 280 and 395 MeV over the course of the Maunder Minimum, and was approximately 142 MeV during the years of peak 10Be concentration as recorded in the Dye 3 and South Pole ice core records.


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Atmospheric Composition Modeling and Analysis Program (ACMAP)
Modeling Analysis and Prediction Program (MAP)