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A Two-Stage Multi-Agent System to Predict the Unsmoothed Monthly Sunspot Numbers

Authors: Mak Kaboudan


A multi-agent system is developed here to predict monthly details of the upcoming peak of the 24th solar magnetic cycle. While studies typically predict the timing and magnitude of cycle peaks using annual data, this one utilizes the unsmoothed monthly sunspot number instead. Monthly numbers display more pronounced fluctuations during periods of strong solar magnetic activity than the annual sunspot numbers. Because strong magnetic activities may cause significant economic damages, predicting monthly variations should provide different and perhaps helpful information for decision-making purposes. The multi-agent system developed here operates in two stages. In the first, it produces twelve predictions of the monthly numbers. In the second, it uses those predictions to deliver a final forecast. Acting as expert agents, genetic programming and neural networks produce the twelve fits and forecasts as well as the final forecast. According to the results obtained, the next peak is predicted to be 156 and is expected to occur in October 2011- with an average of 136 for that year.

Keywords: Computational techniques, discrete wavelet transformations, solar cycle prediction, sunspot numbers.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI):

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