Trends in solar spectral irradiance variability in the visible and infrared

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Abstract

[1] The Spectral Irradiance Monitor (SIM) on-board the Solar Radiation and Climate Experiment (SORCE) satellite provides the first multi-year continuous measurements of solar spectral irradiance (SSI) variability from 200–2400 nm, accounting for about 97% of the total solar irradiance (TSI). In addition to irradiance modulation from active region passage, the SSI values for wavelengths with a brightness temperature greater than 5770 K show a brightening with decreasing solar activity, whereas those with lower brightness temperatures show a dimming. These results demonstrate that different parts of the solar atmosphere contribute differently to the TSI with the behavior in the deep photospheric layers giving an opposing and nearly compensating trend to that in the upper photospheric and lower chromospheric layers. These findings need to be incorporated into Earth-climate assessments since the solar forcing induced by these differential trends are inherently different from the relatively flat spectral contributions employed in the IPCC assessments.

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