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Earth’s Magnetic Field is Acting Strange – Scientists Aren’t Sure Why



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The magnetic poles are moving rapidly, leaving Canada from Siberia, yet geologists can not determine why change is so sudden and dramatic.

On January 15th, scientists from the United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and the Defense Geographic Center (DGC) of the United Kingdom decided to update the world's magnetic model, which describes the magnetic field of the planet and subtends all the modern navigation, from the systems that direct ships at sea to Google Maps on smartphones, because the current model seems to be inaccurate, reports the journal Nature.

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The latest version of the model was built in 201

5 and should have lasted until 2020, however, the magnetic field is changing so rapidly that researchers must do now.

"The error increases continuously," says Arnaud Chulliat, geomagnetist at the University of Colorado Boulder and at the National Environmental Information Centers of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The reason for the change is found inside the Earth: the liquid that agitates in the core of the Earth generates most of the magnetic field. Flows tend to change over time – in 2016 part of the magnetic field underwent a deep acceleration under North America of the South and the Eastern Pacific Ocean. Satellites such as the Swarm mission of the European Space Agency have followed the change.

The World Magnetic Model was in trouble at the beginning of 2018, when researchers at NOAA and the British Geological Survey in Edinburgh revealed that the model was inaccurate to the point that it made navigation errors possible.

The geomagnetic impulse of 2016 under South America and the north magnetic pole movement has worsened the situation. The magnetic north pole has constantly moved from the Canadian Arctic to Siberia for years. However, it has taken speed, from around 15 miles per year to around 55 kilometers per year in the last few decades.

"The fact that the pole is going fast makes this region more susceptible to large errors," says Chulliat

Scientists are planning to upgrade the model, however it may be problematic since the release of the World Magnetic Model is was postponed to January 30 due to the current arrest of the US government.

The key question remains the same: because the magnetic field is changing so dramatically. The possible reasons for the geomagnetic impulses are the "hydromagnetic" waves. that arise from the core of the nucleus and the movement of the magnetic pole could be connected with a high-speed jet of liquid iron beneath Canada.

"The position of the magnetic north pole seems to be governed by two large-scale magnetic fields, one below Canada and one below Siberia," said Phil Livermore, a geomagnetist at the University of Leeds, UK at the American Meeting of the Geophysical Union, noting that the Siberian patch is winning the competition.


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