Metro] Scientists predict that the Earth’s magnetic field can flip far faster than previously thought – unleashing a force which Mayan apocalypse believers thought might destroy our planet in 2012.
Berkeley scientists say that the Earth’s magnetic field can weaken
and dip within just 100 years, before flipping so that compasses point
south – an event they admit could wreck the entire world’s power grid
and expose the world to deadly cosmic rays.
Earth’s magnetic field is weakening 10 times faster than normal at
present, leading geophysicists to predict a flip within a few thousand
years – but Discovery news says that could understimate the speed of the
Authors such as Robert Felix claim that previous reversals have
been associated with mass disruptions such as the extinction of
Neanderthal man, and with supervolcano eruptions and other apocalyptic
The ‘flip’ occurs regularly, but there has not been a documented instance for 800,000 years.
The Berkeley researchers say that apocalyptic events such as
supervolcano eruptions are not likely – but that the flip could leave
Earth exposed to cosmic rays which our magnetic field normally shields
us from, leading to mutations and cancer in human beings.
Study co-author Paul Renne said, ‘We should be thinking more about what the biologic effects would be.’ Read More