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Q & A: Where is the magnetic North Pole?

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Most recent answer: 05/16/2011
Q:
how can the magnetic north be east or west of true north because magnetic north or axis is constant .it cannot move.there the magnetic needle will be pointed towards single direction that is magnetic north .
- Kshitij (age 15)
hubli,India
A:
In fact the magnetic North Pole is not exactly at the Earth's rotational North Pole but is situated somewhat South and East of it.  Not only that but it moves around quite a number of kilometers per year.   This is due to the the subtle changing of the path of the electric currents inside the Earth's core.  The exact path is not easy to calculate in advance but historic records show its path.  In the past 150 years it has moved more than 1,000 kilometers.   See:  and   for some more detailed information.

LeeH

(published on 05/16/2011)

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