The USGS supports an important National Earthquake Hazards Program. As a small part of that effort there have been studies attempting to correlate magnetic variations, or more precisely, electro-magnetic variations, with earthquakes.
Learn what the USGS is doing to understand natural hazards and mitigate their effects on human life and property at the USGS Natural Hazards Web site, which h
We generally emphasize the following four points:
Why don't the elevations on your maps agree with those provided by my GPS system? Which ones are correct?
The USGS publishes approximately 57,000 different topographic maps covering the United States.
Yes. We know this from an examination of the geological record.
Could magnetic reversals be caused by meteorite or cometary impacts? Could reversals be caused by melting of the polar ice caps or some sort of planetary alignment?
One of the most important jobs that a scientist has is to identify -- from among all the possible causes and effects in nature -- those that are the most important and strictly and necessarily causally related, and those that are simply insignificant a
Could the mass extinctions observed in the paleontological record be correlated with magnetic reversals?
The magnetic field of the Earth does protect us from fast-moving charged particles streaming from the Sun, and so does the atmosphere.
The needle of a compass is a small magnet that is allowed to pivot in the horizontal plane. The needle experiences a torque from the ambient magnetic field of the Earth.
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