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Is the Earth’s magnetic field about to flip?
Dr Jon Mound (Associate Professor)
The Earth’s magnetic field is measured on the ground at observatories such as those run by the British Geological Survey in the UK and overseas, and in space by satellites such as the European Space Agency’s SWARM mission. All of our measurements show that the strength of the field is currently decreasing and that the magnetic North pole has started moving unusually fast. Why is the field weakening? Does this weakening mean that the field is about to flip? What impact might such a magnetic reversal have on us?
Why can't we forecast earthquakes?
Dr Laura Gregory (NERC Independent Research Fellow)
The inherently unpredictable nature of earthquakes frequently leads to devastating effects on the populations living in seismically active regions. We scientists are doing our best to understand why earthquakes happen when and where they do, but there is still a lot to learn and many fault lines to investigate. Much of my research is focused on tracking earthquakes in the past, in order to better forecast the future. Come to Pint of Science to learn about the challenges of earthquake forecasting, and why every day in seismic regions the EQ weather is rumbly with a chance of shakes.
More than a pint of magma: looking 'inside' volcanoes from space
Dr Marco Bagnardi (Research Fellow)
There are more than 1500 active volcanoes worldwide, and these are only those that stick their head out of the ocean. Each volcano has one or more reservoirs, or magma chambers, where the molten magma is stored in between eruptions. These chambers lie several kilometers beneath the Earth’s surface but we have developed techniques that allow us to “look inside them” from far away, as far as from space! You’ll discover how much images taken from orbiting satellites can tell us about the inner workings of active volcanoes and what it’s like to be a space-volcanologist.