Earth’s magnetic north pole is hurtling toward Russian Federation

The magnetic north pole is wandering about 34 miles a year. At the end of 2017 it crossed the international date lin

Check your compass: The magnetic north pole is on the move

At the end of 2017, the magnetic north pole crossed the worldwide date line.

The rapid movement forced scientists to release an update of the World Magnetic Model (WMM), or the actual position of the magnetic on February 4 - nearly a year earlier than expected - in order to allow navigational services, including map-based phone apps, to keep working accurately.

Daniel Lathrop of the University of Maryland said, '"It has changes akin to weather".

Life would continue as it is although changes to the magnetic field could have repercussions for smartphones, consumer electronics, and navigation technology.

Earth's north magnetic pole is on the move, and it's moving so quickly scientists are struggling to keep up as it moves towards Siberia. Seventy years later, Roald Amundsen found it had shifted over 30 miles.

The US and United Kingdom tend to update the location of the North Magnetic Pole every five years in December, but this update came early because of the pole's faster movement.

Scientists on Monday released an emergency update to the World Magnetic Model, which cellphone GPS systems and military navigators use to orient themselves.

The change in pace was so sudden that scientists have been forced to update the World Magnetic Model one year ahead of its scheduled five-year update in 2020.

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According to National Georgraphic, the system is vital for navigation, affecting everything from phones to commercial airlines and, if not adjusted based on the changes, could have major effects.

WMM helps to calibrate accurate geographical data for a host of consumer uses including compass apps, maps, and Global Positioning System services found on cellphones and other electronic devices.

For example, the airport in Fairbanks, Alaska, renamed a runway 1L-19R to 2L-20R in 2009. "Airports around the country use the data to give runways numerical names, which pilots refer to on the ground", said the agency. And an overall weakening of the magnetic field isn't good for people and especially satellites and astronauts.

Exactly why the northern magnetic pole is moving at a faster rate is not clear.

"The average user is not going to be overly affected by this unless they happened to be trekking around the high Arctic", Ciaran Beggan, a geophysicist, told National Geographic. "The magnetic field (changes) continuously, but it is partly because of its natural behavior", he added. "They were caused by processes in the core that we don't yet understand".

The reason is turbulence in Earth's liquid outer core.

The charts, known as the World Magnetic Model (WMM), are used to convert between compass measurements of magnetic north and true north.

Earlier, scientists from the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the British Geological Survey updated the coordinates of the magnetic north pole, saying it was gradually leaving the Canadian Arctic behind and moving toward Russia's Siberia at a rate of over 55 km per year, up from less than 15 km in the year 2000.

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