World Magnetic Model Recently Updated Ahead of Time

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Magnetic North is not a static position. The World Magnetic Model was recently updated to reflect the fact that the movement of magnetic north has been rapidly progressing northward towards Siberia.

From an article by Maya Wei-Haas in National Geographic

map of World Magnetic Model Updated

World Magnetic Model Updated

I have to admit that I did not recall that there are 3 North poles. The first is over the axis of rotation of the earth. This is True North. The second is magnetic north – the location where you compass points. And perhaps less well known, there is geomagnetic north which is a point off the northwest coast of Greenland.

Magnetic north has never sat still. In the last hundred years or so, the direction in which our compasses steadfastly point has lumbered ever northward, driven by Earth’s churning liquid outer core some 1,800 miles beneath the surface. Yet in recent years, scientists noticed something unusual: Magnetic north’s routine plod has shifted into high gear, sending it galloping across the Northern Hemisphere—and no one can entirely explain why.

The changes have been so large that scientists began working on an emergency update for the World Magnetic Model, the mathematical system that lays the foundations for navigation, from cell phones and ships to commercial airlines. But then the U.S. government shut down, placing the model’s official release on hold, as Nature News first reported earlier this year.

Now, the wait for a new north is over. The World Magnetic Model update was officially released on Monday, and magnetic north can again be precisely located for people around the world.

Article originally posted

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