Technology

Magnetic north pole moving by 40km per year


Rapid shifts in the Earth's north magnetic pole are forcing researchers to make an unprecedented early update to a model that helps ships, planes and submarines in the Arctic navigate, scientists say.


It didn't move much between 1900 and 1980 but it's really accelerated in the past 40 years," Ciaran Beggan, of the British Geological Survey (BGS) in Edinburgh, said.


A five-year update of the World Magnetic Model was due in 2020 but the US military requested an unprecedented early review, he said.


"The fact that the pole is going fast makes this region more prone to large errors," said Arnaud Chulliat, a geomagnetist at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and NOAA's National Centres for Environmental Information.


But Dr Beggan said the recent shifts in the north magnetic pole would be unnoticed by most people outside the Arctic, for instance those using smartphones in New York, Beijing or London.


Navigation systems in cars or phones rely on radio waves from satellites high above the Earth to pinpoint their position on the ground.






Powered by Blogger.