Evidence of Solar Flare Effects on Human Longevity and Professional Eminence

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Graham John Douglas 
Independent Researcher

Introduction:  A growing body of evidence linking solar activity to human health, and seasonal variations has been shown to affect human longevity (Davis & Lowell, 2018; Skjærvø et al., 2015). Marzullo and Boklage (2011) found that seasonal solar variations affect embryonic development during gastrulation and again during the testosterone surge period of fetal development (Marzullo, 2014). The well-known 27-day solar cycle has received less attention in this field (Halberg et al., 2013). 

Michel Gauquelin (1978) observed that the birth frequency of eminent writers and scientists showed sharp peaks when plotted against the ecliptic position of the moon, but he dismissed them as noise. No structured patterns appear in the lunation cycle, which usually figures more in reports of lunar effects (Bevington, 2015). The source of these patterns is hypothesized to be solar flares, which are known to concentrate in ‘active longitudes’ on the sun and to rotate with it. They tend to form in clusters at heliographic longitudes separated by 180° and sometimes by 90°, which is also a feature in the birth and death data, and to persist sometimes for over a century (Berdyugina & Usoskin, 2003). Blizard (1969) showed that planetary conjunction cycles correlate with solar magnetic storms, and they seem to be involved with the timing of the 11-year sunspot cycle (Grandpierre, 1996). Evidence for these effects has accumulated (Hung, 2007; see articles in Morner, et al., 2013). 

Methods:  The Gauquelin data was downloaded from http://cura.free.fr/. Data on German dynastic families (Muller & Mentzer, 1993) were obtained from Ertel’s (2007) posthumous archive kindly supplied by his son Christian; a collection of mathematicians was kindly provided in Excel format by its curators at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland; publicly available births and death data for the period 1974 – 2019 was supplied by the Scottish Registry. Published data on solar flares (Shea & Smart, 1990) was supplemented by data available on the NASA website. 

Data were analyzed using the astrological Jigsaw 2 software based on the Swiss Ephemeris. Statistical validity was assessed using Chi-Squared (df = 1) from a 2×2 Contingency Table thus allowing Effect Sizes to be calculated as Cohen’s ‘d’. Percentage increases were also calculated. 

Results: Patterns in the 27-day cycle appear in many Gauquelin professional data sets, in their collection of Parisian birth and death data, and in three other independent datasets. A T-Square pattern of peaks similar to that of the writers and scientists was placed in overlapping ‘lunar’ longitudes and is apparent in the solar flare data. The birth data peaks show highly significant correlations with heliocentric planetary conjunction cycles. 

Discussion:  There are possible practical applications in the fields of medicine and insurance relating both to longevity and to SIDS deaths. Marzullo’s work suggests a way to understand the influence of space weather at key points during gestation of the embryo and fetus and possibly in the timing of spontaneous births. A solar origin of the 27-day variations is supported by their correlations with key phases in heliocentric planetary conjunction cycles.  

Berdyugina, S. V., & Usoskin, I. G. (2003). Active longitudes in sunspot activity: Century scale persistence. Astronomy & Astrophysics, 405, 1121–1128. 

Bevington, M. (2015). Lunar biological effects and the magnetosphere. Pathophysiology, 22, 211–222. 

Blizard, J. B. (1969). Long-Range solar flare prediction. NASA Contractor Report, CR 61316. 

Davis, G., & Lowell, W. E. (2018). Solar energy at birth and human lifespan. Journal of Photochemistry & Photobiology B: Biology, 186, 59–68. 

Ertel, S. (2007). Hopeful findings, unduly neglected, on stars and human affairs. Australian Journal of Parapsychology, 7(1), 52-71. 

Gauquelin, M. (1978). Statistical tests of zodiacal influences. Book I: Profession and heredity. Scientific Documents #3. Paris: Laboratoire des Etudes des Relations entre Rythmes Cosmique et Psychophysiologiques. 

Grandpierre, A. (1996). On the origin of solar cycle periodicity. Astrophysics and Space Science, 243, 393 – 400. 

Halberg, F., Düll-Pfa, N., Gumarova, L., Zenchenko, T. A., Schwartzkop, O., Freytag, E. M., Freytag, J., & Cornelissen, G. (2013). 27-day cycles in human mortality: Traute and Bernhard Düll. History of Geo- and Space Sciences, 4, 47–59. 

Hung, C.-C. (2007). Apparent relations between solar activity and solar tides caused by the planets. NASA Report, NASA TM-2007-214817. https://ntrs.nasa.gov/api/citations/20070025111/downloads/20070025111.pdf 

Marzullo, G. (2014). Similar photoperiod-related birth seasonalities among professional baseball players and lesbian women with an opposite seasonality among gay men: Maternal melatonin may affect fetal sexual dimorphism. Psychiatry Research, 216, 424 – 431. 

Marzullo, G., & Boklage, C. E. (2011). Bimodal rhythms of general conceptions and the birth-month phenomenon in schizophrenia, neural tube defects and laterality: A solstitial hypothesis. Birth Defects Research Part A: Clinical and Molecular Teratology, 91, 249-257.

Morner, N.-A., Tattersall, R., & Solheim, J.-E. (Eds.) (2013). Pattern in solar variability: their planetary origin and terrestrial impacts. Pattern Recognition in Physics. http://www.pattern-recogn-phys.net/special_issue2.html 

Muller, A., & Mentzer, G. (1993). 1145 Angehörige deutscher Dynastien [1145 members of German dynasties]. Astro-Research Data 4. Waldmohr, A. P. Muller-Verlag. 

Shea, M. A., & Smart, D. F. (1990). A summary of major solar proton events. Solar Physics, 127(2), 297-320. 

Skjærvø, G. R., Fossøy, F., & Røskaft, E. (2015). Solar activity at birth predicted infant survival and women’s fertility in historical Norway. Proceedings oft he Royal Society B, 282, 20142032.

Course Instructor

Graham Douglas
Graham Douglas Author

After graduating with B.Sc, ARCS in Chemistry from Imperial College, London, he carried out and published research on the motility of protozoans; followed by school-teaching until 2011. He began researching the Gauquelin data in 1977.Recently his interest has focused on the possible role of the 27-day solar rotation cycle in this phenomenon, and on evidence that can be found outside of the Gauquelin database. His research has been published in Correlation, as well as studies on astrological symbolism in the journal Semiotica. He translated the book: O Mundo da Astrologia from Portuguese (Sophia Centre Press, 2014).

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  1. thank you for your important information.
    would recommend the book of Alexandr Chizevsky The Earthly Echo of Thunders on Sun, 1976. It is right on your subject!

  2. Fascinating topic! I didn’t quite understand the results of your findings or how to read your charts. Is there anywhere I can go to get more understanding of your work?

  3. Interesting work!
    Maybe you should not speak of the Moon positions in the Zodiacal signs because Gauquelin sectors are analogous to house positions and not to Zodiacal signs.
    Or did I misunderstand something in your presentation?

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