Friday, 22 February, 2019


Magnetic north pole is drifting fast; military, NASA, airports, birds are affected

World Magnetic Model mid-cycle Are We Doomed? How Magnetic North Pole's Moving to Russia Will Affect You
Kristine Garrett | 06 February, 2019, 05:38

To track the Magnetic North Pole the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the British Geological Survey developed the World Magnetic Model so that scientists around the world could all relate to the same resource.

However, the magnetic north pole is moving faster than normal resulting in a new out of cycle release for the WMM.

But its swift pace toward Siberia in recent years at a rate of around 55 kilometres per year has forced scientists to update the World Magnetic Model - used by civilian navigation systems, the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation, and U.S. and British militaries - a year ahead of schedule.

At the end of 2017, the magnetic north pole crossed the global date line.

The U.S.' National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) said in a statement Monday that scientists had updated the World Magnetic Model, used by smartphone and consumer electronics for maps and Global Positioning System services, ahead of time to account for unplanned changes in the Earth's magnetic field.

Since 1831 when it was first measured in the Canadian Arctic it has moved about 1,400 miles (2300 kilometers) toward Siberia.

NOAA explained that the WMM is updated every five years, but due to the shift of the pole, scientists were forced to publish the WMM update a year earlier.

Dr Lathrop, who who wasn't part of the team monitoring the magnetic north pole said: 'It has changes akin to weather.

The US Federal Aviation Administration and space agency NASA similarly use the magnetic pole as a point of reference.

North Pole
CC BY 2.0 Christopher Michel Tardis located North Pole Magnetic North Pole's'Pretty Fast Moving to Russia's Siberia- Scientists

These "unplanned variations" are basically the quick movement of the magnetic pole which is causing a problem for every device with a magnetic compass on the Earth. This spot is affected by the flows of-of liquid iron in Earth's core and hence is susceptible to movement.

Airport runway names are based on their direction towards magnetic north and their names change when the poles move.

One theory supplied by Livermore to National Geographic may lie buried deep towards the earth's core. It has happened numerous times in Earth's past, but not in the last 780,000 years. Consequently, magnetic north doesn't align with geographic north (the end point of Earth's rotational axis), and it's constantly on the move.

'It's not a question of if it's going to reverse, the question is when it's going to reverse, ' Dr Lathrop said.

The swarm mission involves the magnetic-field mapping satellites that zip around Earth 15 to 16 times each day.

Whales are also attuned to magnetic fields.

The magnetic field shields Earth from some risky radiation, Mr Lathrop said. It is also used by smartphone providers for Global Positioning System, maps and compass apps.

They can be found in the navigation systems of ships and airplanes as well as geological applications - such as drilling and mining. Now the WMM has been updated, researchers are working to understand the changes.

'Your smartphone camera and various apps can use the magnetic field to help determine the direction you are facing, ' he continued.

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