Heliospheric modulation of galactic cosmic rays during grand solar minima: Past and future variations



[1] Galactic cosmic ray flux at Earth is modulated by the heliospheric magnetic field. Heliospheric modulation potential, Φ, during grand solar minima is investigated using an open solar flux (OSF) model with OSF source based on sunspot number, R, and OSF loss on heliospheric current sheet inclination. Changing dominance between source and loss means Φ varies in- (anti-) phase with R during strong (weak) cycles, in agreement with Φ estimates from ice core records of10Be concentration, which are in-phase during most of the last 300 years, but anti-phase during the Maunder Minimum. Model results suggest “flat” OSF cycles, such as solar cycle 20 result from OSF source and loss terms temporarily balancing throughout the cycle. Thus even if solar activity continues to decline steadily, the long-term drop in OSF through SC21 to SC23 may plateau during SC24, though reemerge in SC25 with the inverted phase relation.