Our planet is not only testing Oscillation at the magnetic poles, but there is evidence that the geographic poles have also changed over the ages. That’s right: the globe, for some reason, rotated 12 degrees, to come back later, adding a total of 25 degrees of tilt over 5 million years. At least that’s what a new study suggests, which used bacterial fossils for the discovery.
This phenomenon of planetary tilt is known as the polar shift hypothesis, which is a guess describing the Earth’s tilt, or precession, at a particular time. There are plenty of studies on this topic, including research on the so-called true polar deviation that leads to intense debates about when, how and when our planet’s geographic poles have changed.
However, true polar drift cannot be confused with other phenomena such as the movement of tectonic plates or magnetic poles. Initial proposals, written by Charles Hapgood before developing the theory of plate tectonics, were that the Earth underwent several rapid shifts in its layers, each taking about 5,000 years, followed by periods of 20,000 to 30,000 years without polar motions.
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Today, although Hapgood’s calculations have not been supported by evidence, true polar drift has been scientifically proven as a phenomenon that occurred many times in the past, but at rates approximately one degree per million years. Among the possible factors causing this movement are changes in the distribution of masses on the Earth’s surface and the mantle. But, as has been said before, debates over numbers abound.
Well, the new study was looking for new clues in stones from Italy, in the Apennine mountain range, where there are bacterial fossils that contain the mineral magnetite, the most magnetic element on Earth. This is important because magnetic materials are very good at “recording” things like the direction of a planet’s magnetic poles, and there’s a scientific field to study that: paleomagnetism.
Fossilized bacteria told the international team of scientists that 84 million years ago, in the late Cretaceous period, the entire mantle and crust swirled around the Earth’s outer (liquid) core, as if adrift on a liquid. If we could see Earth from space with the effect of the millions of years interval accelerating into a few minutes, the planet would appear to be turned on its side, and then back up, somewhat like “silly john.”
If true, scientists would have new evidence for Ice Age causes, but above all, “challenges the idea that the spin axis has been largely stable over the past 100 million years,” the researchers wrote. study was Published in Nature Communications.
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