North Magnetic pole heading for Siberia
Earth’s north magnetic pole is drifting away from North America so fast that it could end up in Siberia within 50 years, boffins say. The shift could mean that Alaska will lose its northern lights, or auroras, which might then be more visible in areas of Siberia and Europe.
The magnetic poles are different from geographic poles, the surface points marking the axis of Earth’s rotation. Magnetic poles are known to migrate and, occasionally, swap places.
Previous studies have shown that the strength of the Earth’s magnetic shield has decreased 10% over the past 150 years. During the same period, the north magnetic pole wandered about 1,100km (685 miles) into the Arctic, according to the new analysis.
The north magnetic pole was first discovered in 1831 and when it was revisited in 1904, explorers found it had moved by 50km (31 miles).