One Possible Reason for Double-Peaked Maxima in Solar Cycles: Is a Second Maximum of Solar Cycle 24 Coming?
We investigate solar activity by focusing on double maxima in solar cycles and try to estimate the shape of the current solar cycle (Cycle 24) during its maximum. We analyzed data for Solar Cycle 24 by using Learmonth Solar Observatory sunspot group data since 2008. All sunspot groups (SGs) recorded during this time interval were separated into two groups: The first group includes small SGs [A, B, C, H, classes by the Zurich classification], and the second group consists of large SGs [D, E, and F]. We then calculated small and large sunspot group numbers, their sunspot numbers [SSN] and Zurich numbers [Rz] from their daily mean numbers as observed on the solar disk during a given month. We found that the temporal variations for these three different separations behave similarly. We also analyzed the general shape of solar cycles from Cycle 1 to 23 by using monthly International Sunspot Number [ISSN] data and found that the durations of maxima were about 2.9 years. Finally, we used ascending time and SSN relationship and found that the maximum of the Cycle 24 should be later than 2011. Thus, we conclude that i) one possible reason for a double maximum in solar cycles is the different behavior of large and small sunspot groups, and ii) a double maximum is coming for Solar Cycle 24.