Orbital resonance and the celestial origins of Earth’s climatic changes – Why Phi?

A year after I wrote the original ‘Why Phi’ post explaining my discovery of the Fibonacci sequence links between solar system orbits and planetary synodic periods here at the Talkshop in 2013, my time and effort got diverted into politics. The majority of ongoing research into this important topic has been furthered by my co-blogger Stuart ‘Oldbrew’ Graham. Over the last eight years he has published many articles here using the ‘Why Phi’ tag looking at various subsystems of planetary and solar interaction periodicities, resonances, and their relationships with well known climatic periodicities such as the De Vries, Hallstatt, Hale and Jose cycles, as well as exoplanetary systems exhibiting the same Fibonacci-resonant arrangements.

Recently, Stuart contacted me with news of a major breakthrough in his investigations. In the space of a few hours spent making his calculator hot, major pieces of the giant jigsaw had all come together and brought ‘the big picture’ into focus. In fact, so much progress has been made that we’re not going to try to put it all into a single post. Instead, we’ll provide an overview here, and follow it up with further articles getting into greater detail.

One of the longest known climatic periods is the ~413,000 year cycle in the eccentricity of Earth’s orbit. This period has been found in various types of core sample data and discussed in many paleoclimatic science papers, along with cyclicities around 95, 112 and 124kyr, and shorter periods such as Earth’s obliquity variation, ~41Kyr and Earth’s equinoctial-precession periods of ~19 and ~23kyr. Stuart has discovered how all of these periods are related to each other and to the planetary orbits and their synodic conjunctions.

We’ve also been able to link these Earth Orientation Parameters and climatic periodicities to the planetary orbital and synodic conjunction periods which we believe are key to modulating solar activity. The basis for these were laid out in my 2011 post on Jupiter and Saturn’s motion and further developed with the valuable input of many Talkshop contributors, culminating in the solar variation models published by Rick Salvador and Ian Wilson in the 2013 special issue of Pattern Recognition in Physics.

Solar Total Solar Irradiance (TSI) prediction model hindcast created by Rick Salvador using planetary periods discussed at the Talkshop in 2013

Figure 1 below scratches the surface of what we have discovered. These relationships are all precise whole number ratios, not approximations. The red ‘Graham Cycle’ is a novel addition to previously known cyclic periods which connects the three areas of the figure; Solar-Planetary at the top, climatic periods bottom left, and Earth Orientation Parameters bottom right. Of note, are the ratios between the 60kyr Graham Cycle period and the periods in the three groups. They are mostly ratios of Fibonacci numbers or combinations of them. We know from a previous investigation that Fibonacci and phi (Golden Section) related periodicities tend to be stable and minimally resonant. It could be that the reason the 60kyr period hasn’t been found previously is due to it not showing up strongly in periodograms and other spectral analyses. Nonetheless, it’s an important period for our ‘Why Phi’ investigation and has a lot more connections than we wanted to clutter up Figure 1 with, as it already looks pretty busy!

Figure 1. Spatio-temporal diagram showing solar system dynamical arrangement with particular reference to solar modulation, climatic periods and Earth Orientation Parameters affecting Milankovitch cycles.

Solar cycles

Starting with the upper ‘Solar planetary’ section of figure 1, Ian Wilson’s 2013 PRP paper noted that the Hale cycle and Jupiter-Saturn synodic (J-S) have a 193 year beat period, which is evident in Oxygen18 isotope data as well as Group Sunpot Numbers and 10Be ice core data. This was picked up by the Helmholtz Institute research lab and covered in our earlier post on the Solar Magnetic cycle. What they didn’t pick up on is the fact that the same 193year beat period can also be derived from the 178.8yr Jose cycle and the 2403yr Solar Inertial Motion (SIM) period.

This second route to the 193 year solar magnetic cycle is a novel result revealed in this post. Using the beat period formula of (A*B)/(A-B) = period, the solar inertial motion cycle (A) proposed by Charvatova of ~2403 tropical years and the Jose cycle (B) produces the same 193 year result. It was then possible to tie all this together in the 60 kyr cycle shown in the diagram.

There are 336 Jose and 25 SIM in 60 kyr which means the beat period produces 336-25 = 311 solar magnetic cycles of 193 years each. The number of Hale cycles in 60 kyr is given by the number of J-S minus the number of solar magnetic cycles. i.e. 3024-311 = 2713. It’s notable that 311 and 2713 are both prime numbers. Coupled with the fact that the number of J-S in 60Kyr is the Fibonacci multiple 144×21, we think this is a strong indicator that both 193yr and 60kyr periods are significant solar-planetary cyclic periods.

Support for the 60kyr period comes from Russia, where in 2017 A. S. Perminov and E. D. Kuznetsov produced a paper at at Ural Federal University, Yekaterinburg, entitled ‘Orbital Evolution of the Sun–Jupiter–Saturn–Uranus–Neptune Four-Planet System on Long-Time Scales’. This paper shows inter-related variations in the orbital parameters of the gas giants including antiphase changes in the eccentricities and orbital inclinations of Jupiter and Saturn at ~60kyr and in-phase changes in those parameters at ~400kyr, antiphase to Uranus. These ~400kyr variations are likely to be drivers of Earth’s 413kyr eccentricity cycle.

ISSN 0038-0946, Solar System Research, 2018, Vol. 52, No. 3, pp. 241–259. © Pleiades Publishing, Inc., 2018.
Original Russian Text © A.S. Perminov, E.D. Kuznetsov, 2018, published in Astronomicheskii Vestnik, 2018, Vol. 52, No. 3, pp. 239–259

Planetary-climatic cycles

Moving on to the lower left ‘climatic and planetary cycles’ section of Figure 1,

The de Vries cycle is half of 21 J-S and is a prominent climatic cycle. It also links to other cycles through resonant harmonics: Hallstatt = 11 de Vries, J-S synodic precession cycle = 12 de Vries. 6 de Vries is 7 Jose cycles. 33 de Vries is 7 Eddy cycles. See also Why Phi? – Jupiter, Saturn and the de Vries cycle.

The lunar-terrestrial year (L-T) is 13 lunar months. Earth’s tropical year is used throughout this post. Whole numbers of both occur at 353 tropical years and 363 lunar years, forming 10 beats (363-353) of 35.3 years. An important period is 13 L-T, which is 2 Hallstatts and 11 de Vries cycle pairs (22 de Vries). This is 1/9th of the obliquity cycle. It is also 3x7x11 J-S. It follows that the 41kyr obliquity cycle is 3x7x11 Jose cycles, because the Jose cycle is 9 J-S. 3,7 and 11 are all Lucas numbers. We will post a separate article on the inter-relation of the Fibonacci and Lucas series, as they relate to orbital resonance. See also Sidorenkov and the lunar or tidal year (2016)

An explanation for the effect of the motion of the gas giants on these and other climatic periods is found in Nicola Scafetta’s 2020 paper ‘Solar Oscillations and the Orbital Invariant Inequalities of the Solar System’ discussed here at the talkshop.


At the lower right of Figure 1 we find Earth orientation parameters and associated cycles. To understand how these link to planetary periods we need to look at the motions of Jupiter and Saturn in particular. Kepler gives us this useful graphic in his book De Stella Nova (1606).

Kepler’s trigon showing the ~60 year cycle in the longitude of the Jupiter-Saturn synodic conjunctions. This may be linked to the ~60yr cycle of Earth’s major oceans, giving rise to the 30 year global cooling scare 1960-90 and the subsequent global warming scare 1990-2020.

From an earlier post: ‘As successive great conjunctions occur nearly 120° apart, their appearances form a triangular pattern. In a series every fourth conjunction returns after some 59.8 years to the vicinity of the first. These returns are observed to be shifted by some 7–8°’. Wikipedia. [2019 version]. After 3 J-S the conjunctions have nearly described an exact triangle, but the start position has moved (precessed) slightly, by 60/7 degrees of precession of the J-S conjunction axis. It takes 42 of those (42*3 J-S) to complete the precession cycle in 2503 years. (41×61.051 y = 41×360 degrees movement of the axis).

The 413kyr eccentricity cycle is equivalent to 55*3 of these J-S synodic precession periods, and 6765 or 55×123 (Fibonacci and Lucas numbers) of the 61.051 360 degree periods. Additionally 413 kyr = 10 obliquity periods.

In the brown triangle: the 19 kyr and 23 kyr periods have a beat period of the 112kyr perihelion precession period.
23 kyr is 10 Hallstatt cycles.

In the blue triangle: the 95 kyr (5×19 kyr) and 124 kyr (3 obliquities) have a beat period of 413 kyr i.e. Earth’s eccentricity cycle (mentioned in various research papers). Since our 95 kyr = 353×270 and our 124 kyr = 353×351, we find: (351×270) / (351-270) = 1170, and 1170*353 = 413010 years (the obliquity period).


The 95 and 124kyr eccentricity cycles are linked with glacial periods. From Park and Maarsch (1993) paper ‘Plio—Pleistocene time evolution of the 100-kyr cycle in marine paleoclimate records’: “The DSDP 607 time scale is more favorable to an abrupt jump in amplitude for the 95-kyr δ18O envelope, but not in the 124-kyr envelope. Rather, long-period δ18O fluctuations appear phase-locked with the 124-kyr eccentricity cycle some 300-400 kyr prior to its growth in amplitude and phase-lock with the 95-kyr eccentricity cycle in the late Pleistocene.” Because the 124kyr period is 3x41kyr (obliquity period), this may help explain the change from glacial periods around 41kyr to around 100kyr.

The bi-modality of glacial cycles and the 95 and 124kyr cycles is one of the modes of variation mirrored between celestial cyclic motion and Earth climatic events. There are also many periods which are ‘quasi-cyclic’ and vary in length within bounds whose attractor nodes fit our phi-Fibonacci scheme. We are not claiming to have elucidated a deterministic and predictable system with our precise whole-number orbitally resonant ratios. We are offering this scheme as a potentially useful roadmap for further investigations into the intriguing numerical links between planetary orbits, synodic timings, planar inclinations, eccentricities, energy transfers and other celestial mechanical and orientation data.

As an example of how our scheme links shorter to longer term cycles, there are exactly 9 Jupiter Saturn conjunctions in the period of the Jose cycle of 178.8 years. There are 55x21x2 Jose cycles in the 413kyr eccentricity period. Experienced researchers like Paul Vaughan will immediately see that this product of multiple Fibonacci numbers resolves to the product of the first 6 prime numbers 1,2,3,5,7,11.

The solar system is organised by the forces of gravity and electro-magnetism into a log-normal distribution of which the Fibonacci series and Lucas series are examples which maintain the stability of the system. Resonance is minimised, but also utilised to transfer energy between orbits in order to resolve inequalities through resonance-forced changes to the eccentricity and inclination of orbits. These changes give rise to the cyclic changes in climatic factors on Earth observed at all timescales from the ~22yr Hale and ~60yr J-S trigon to the ~100kyr and 413kyr glaciation in core sample data and other indices.

Data sources and acknowledgements

Planetary data used is from NASA JPL which gives the Seidelmann values for orbital periods. Our thanks to Paul Vaughan for insisting on their use.

The periods we have calculated can all be reproduced using the ratios we have provided on Figure 1 and the NASA JPL values for the Jupiter, Saturn and Uranus orbital periods.

via Tallbloke’s Talkshop


October 30, 2021 at 07:30AM

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