Earth's magnetic north pole is rapidly shifting to Siberia - and now we know why

At the urgent request of the US military, the World Magnetic Model of the Earth (which is regularly revised) was updated ahead of schedule, which was very expensive. And therefore, scientists had a strong incentive to find out why the movement of the planet's magnetic poles accelerated in order to facilitate their fate for the future. Geophysicists Julien Aubert and Christopher Finlay spent 4 million hours running supercomputers to find the cause.

The Earth's magnetic field exists because our planet has a liquid metal core that is constantly moving. This movement has the character of rotation around an axis, but due to the inhomogeneity of the medium, oscillations occur there every now and then. Such turbulences provoke displacements in the magnetic field and can move even the poles.

Simulations by Aubert and Finlay have shown that bubbles of liquid iron in the planet's core are to blame. They are lighter and hotter than the surrounding molten nickel, and therefore relatively quickly and easily rise to the surface of the core. Such displacements cause waves in the magnetic field.

Alas, so far the knowledge of geophysicists is not enough to measure the intensity of processes in the liquid core. And they cannot predict the next magnetic oscillations - more precisely, the calculations do not give the required level of accuracy. However, optimists believe that it is only a matter of labor and time, when the model will be supplemented and predicting changes in the planet's magnetic field will become the norm.