Man's physical universe

xanabras

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88 THE UNIVERSE A VAST SYSTEM OF PARTS

according to A. G. McNish of the Carnegie Institution. This storm

was accompanied by obstruction of transatlantic radio communication,

numerous interruptions in wired communications services, and interference

with the operation of electric power systems.

There is some evidence that the weather is influenced by sunspots.

W. B. Schotakovilch, after studying the records from 1869 to 1920,

concluded that sunspots bring more rain on the average over the whole

Fig. 20. The sun, showing unusual activity in both flocculi and prominences.

(Photograph from the Yerkes Observatory, reprinted by permission of the

University of Chicago Press).

earth, because the earth receives more radiations during a sunspot

period, and this increased radiation produces more heat, which evaporates

more water, which precipitates as rain.

The sun rotates about its axis in the same direction as does the earth

but not being a solid, it does not rotate uniformly as a whole. Thus

spots on the sun's equator rotate in about 24.6 days as compared with

a rotational period of 34 days or more near the poles.

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