Extreme reasons from Earth translated into Russia

Scientists think the tension between the two magnetic fields below Canada and Siberia is the reason why the north magnetic field of the Earth moves.

The north magnetic field of the Earth is shifting from Canada to Siberia. Photo: Science Alert.

A team at the University of Leeds found that the pole's magnetic north position is controlled by two magnetic fields, one below Canada and one below Siberia. They create a tension effect that determines the position of the magnetic pole, according to lead researcher Dr Phil Livermore.

"Historically, the magnetic field below Canada won and that is why the magnetic field is concentrated in Canada. But over the past few decades, this region has weakened and the magnetic field below Siberia has strengthened," said Dr. Livermore said. "That explains why the magnetic pole suddenly accelerated moving away from the familiar position."

The researchers explained that the changing strength of the two magnetic fields is due to changes in the molten material flow in the Earth. Dr. Livermore and his colleagues have also sought to model the north pole travel path using satellite data to measure the changing shape of the Earth's magnetic field over the past 20 years. Their latest model indicates that the magnetic north pole will continue to move toward Russia before it begins to slow down. But researchers are not sure if this time it will move back into Canada.

In recent years, the north magnetic field has shifted so much that the U.S. National Geophysical Data Center and the British Geological Survey have to update the World Magnetic Model early in 2019. The model representing the Earth's magnetic field is widely used in navigation systems and devices such as phones to fix compass errors. Dr. Livermore and colleagues published their findings today in the journal Nature Geoscience.