New study reveals more about anomaly in Earth’s magnetic field

The strange behavior of the Earth’s magnetic field in the South Atlantic region is a recurring anomaly that has existed for 8 to 11 million years. This casts doubt on the theory that the Earth’s magnetic axis at this point will soon change. The results of the analysis are presented in the journal Proceedings of National Academy of Sciences.

The South Atlantic Anomaly is an area in which the strength of the Earth’s magnetic field is significantly reduced compared to areas in similar geographic latitudes. Therefore, people observing this area may notice technical malfunctions on board satellites and spacecraft.

For the first time in a long time, we have monitored the state of the magnetic field in this region of the Atlantic. The data show that this anomaly has been around for a very long time. Therefore, its existence cannot speak of an imminent reversal of the poles.

Climat map

Yael Engbers, one of the authors of the work, geophysicist at the University of Liverpool in the UK
The South Atlantic Anomaly has remained the subject of controversy over the years, in addition to damaging space technology. It is not known where the deviations come from and whether they indicate the beginning of a complete weakening of the field and a possible impending reversal of the poles.

A group of researchers took measurements and found that the average strength of the magnetic field and the general vector of its direction inside the South Atlantic Magnetic Anomaly remained almost unchanged throughout this time. This means that there are no plans to change the poles in the near future because this area has existed for more than 11 million years.

Scientists also note that their findings support the hypothesis of a link between the South Atlantic anomaly and anomalous seismic features in the lowermost mantle and outer core of our planet. In addition, geophysicists plan in the near future to establish a connection between the behavior of the geomagnetic field and processes in the interior of the Earth.