Magnetic Poles

1 Feb 2018

William sent in this link - ... apparently, earth's north and south magnetic poles, in the past, used to flip regularly, at 200 to 300,000 years intervals. Currently, we are led to believe, the poles have not flipped for the last 780,000 years. Is the dating methodology haywire and why do magnetic poles flip?

Over at ... not only do we have windy black holes (see News last week) but 'hostile' black hole winds. It seems the existence of molecules in winds emanating from black holes have a secret - this should not be possible (or contradicts the theory). Molecules have been found in the wind swirling around super massive black holes at the heart of galaxies yet their discovery is said to be like finding ice in a furnace.

The situation has led to a rethink and we now have a new article in a journal that seeks to explain away the contradiction. The molecules are not missing, we are told, but have adapted to the new more hostile conditions by creating a new kind of molecule - a modification of the older molecules shredded by the black hole. That is of course the beauty of the human mind - inventing reasons to carry on believing in something even when the evidence is telling you something is wrong with the theory. NASAs launch of the James Webb Space Telescope in 2019, it is hoped, will be able to test the new theory (is it all wind or does it have substance?