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Annales Geophysicae An interactive open-access journal of the European Geosciences Union
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Volume 36, issue 2 | Copyright
Ann. Geophys., 36, 633-640, 2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

ANGEO Communicates 18 Apr 2018

ANGEO Communicates | 18 Apr 2018

Solar rotational cycle in lightning activity in Japan during the 18–19th centuries

Hiroko Miyahara1, Ryuho Kataoka2,3, Takehiko Mikami4, Masumi Zaiki5, Junpei Hirano4, Minoru Yoshimura6, Yasuyuki Aono7, and Kiyomi Iwahashi8 Hiroko Miyahara et al.
  • 1Humanities and Sciences/Museum Careers, Musashino Art University, 1-736 Ogawa-cho, Kodaira-city, Tokyo 187-8505, Japan
  • 2National Institute of Polar Research, 10-3, Midori-cho, Tachikawa-city, Tokyo 190-8518, Japan
  • 3Department of Polar Science, School of Multidisciplinary Sciences, Sokendai 10-3 Midori-cho, Tachikawa-city, Tokyo 190-8518, Japan
  • 4Faculty of Liberal Arts, Teikyo University, 359 Ohtsuka, Hachioji city, Tokyo 192-0395, Japan
  • 5Faculty of Economics, Seikei University, 3-3-1 Kichijoji-Kitamachi, Musashino-city, Tokyo 180-8633, Japan
  • 6Faculty of Education, University of Yamanashi, 4-4-37 Takeda, Kofu-city, Yamanashi 400-8510, Japan
  • 7Graduate School of Life and Environmental Sciences, Osaka Prefecture University, 1-1 Gakuen-cho, Naka-ku, Sakai-city, Osaka 599-8531, Japan
  • 8National Institute of Japanese Literature, 10-3, Midori-cho, Tachikawa-city, Tokyo 190-0014, Japan

Abstract. Thunderstorm and cloud activities sometimes show a 27-day period, and this has long been studied to uncover a possible important link to solar rotation. Because the 27-day variations in the solar forcing parameters such as solar ultraviolet and galactic cosmic rays become more prominent when the solar activity is high, it is expected that the signal of the 27-day period in meteorological phenomena may wax and wane according to the changes in the solar activity level. In this study, we examine in detail the intensity variations in the signal of the 27-day solar rotational period in thunder and lightning activity from the 18th to the 19th centuries based on 150-year-long records found in old diaries kept in Japan and discuss their relation with the solar activity levels. Such long records enable us to examine the signals of solar rotation at both high and low solar activity levels. We found that the signal of the solar rotational period in the thunder and lightning activity increases as the solar activity increases. In this study, we also discuss the possibility of the impact of the long-term climatological conditions on the signals of the 27-day period in thunder/lightning activities.

Publications Copernicus
Short summary
Old diaries kept in Japan tell us a surprising fact. The 27-day solar rotational period in thunder and lightning activities had been persistent for the past 300 years. The intensity is found to be more prominent as solar activity increases. The physical mechanism of the Sun–Climate connection is yet uncertain, an important link surely exists between the solar activity and terrestrial climate even at a meteorological timescale.
Old diaries kept in Japan tell us a surprising fact. The 27-day solar rotational period in...