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WHAT ARE THE DYNAMICS OF THE EARTH'S MAGNETIC FIELD AND ITS INTERACTIONS WITH THE EARTH SYSTEM?

 

 
  Computer simulated Magnetism
 

The removal of heat from the core by the convecting mantle drives the geodynamo that generates the Earth's magnetic field. Much recent progress has been made in modeling the dynamo process, yet much remains to be understood. How is the magnetic field evolving on annual to decadal time scales? For how much longer will the current rate of decay of the field, sufficiently rapid to eliminate the dipole in 2000 years, be maintained? What role does the core play in the angular momentum balance of the Earth on decadal time scales? How important is the magnetic field in modulating the possible effects of space weather on the atmosphere, and hence on climate?

Space magnetic measurements are essential for mapping and understanding not only the main part of the Earth's magnetic field generated in the Earth's liquid outer core, but also the crustal field, the external field, and currents induced in the mantle by the external field. The combination of satellite-based measurements with numerical modeling promises to lead to a new level of understanding of the generation of Earth's magnetic field.

 
     
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