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What is Geomagnetism

Friday - April 21, 2017 9:46 am , Category : Fun Facts
Geomagnetism
Geomagnetism

Scientists believe that Earth’s magnetism from electric currents generated by the movement of hot liquid iron in its field with invisible lines of force flowing between Earth’s geomagnetic poles. These are not the same as the North and south poles and, more significant, they are not stationary. The geomagnetic poles mark the ends of the axis of Earth’s magnetic fields.
                       In 1971 a group of scientists investigating a 30,000 year old aboriginal campsite in Australia discovered that the fire’s heat allowed iron particles in the stones to realign with Earth’s magnetic field at the time. What’s more, the iron particles pointed south, indicating that magnetic north at that time must have been somewhere in the Antarctic. The discovery confirmed other recent reversals of the Earth’s magnetic field.
                It is now understood that major reversals in Earth’s magnetic field occur about every half million years. Shorter flips, lasting a few thousand to 200,000 years, occur at other times. These reversals are clearly recorded in the rocks created in the seafloors Mid- Atlantic Ridge, which are carried away from the ridge by shifting ocean-floor plates.
                 Earth’s magnetic field dominates a region called the magnetosphere, which wraps, around the planet and the atmosphere.
               Solar wind-charged particles flowing from the sun- presses the magnetosphere against Earth on the side facing the sun and stretches it on the shadow side.
               Nevertheless, some particles of solar wind do leak through and are trapped in the Van Allen belt. When they hit atoms of gas in the upper atmosphere, near the geomagnetic poles, they produce the eerie light displays that are called auroras.
 
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