pjt33 notes a recently published paper proposing that ocean currents could account for Earth's magnetic field. The wrteup appears on the Institute of Physics site; the IOP is co-owner, with the German Physical Society, of the open-access journal in which the paper appears. This reader adds, "The currently predominant theory is that the cause of Earth's magnetic field is molten iron flowing in the outer core. There is at present no direct evidence for either theory." "Professor Gregory Ryskin from the School of Engineering and Applied Science at Northwestern University in Illinois, US, has defied the long-standing convention by applying equations from magnetohydrodynamics to our oceans' salt water (which conducts electricity) and found that the long-term changes (the secular variation) in the Earth's main magnetic field are possibly induced by our oceans' circulation."
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