The quiet spell is a bit strange because 2013 is supposed to be a year of solar maximum, with lots
of flares and sunspots. Supporting this view are data from NASA-supported observatories which
show that the sun's magnetic field is poised to flip--a long-held sign that Solar Max has arrived.
Nevertheless, solar activity is low.
One possible explanation is that Solar Max is double-peaked and we are in the valley between peaks. If so, solar activity could surge again in late 2013-2014. No one can say for sure, though. Researchers have
been studying sunspots for more than 400 years, and we still cannot predict the behavior of the
solar cycle. Continued quiet or stormy space weather? Both are possible in the weeks and months