Magnetic north refers to the direction in which a compass needle points by default, and for the first time in 360 years, those who were in the Greenwich area could experience magnetic north aligning perfectly with true north. They are able to align through a process called the angle of declination. Declination refers to the angle that a specific horizontal plane is between both magnetic north and true north. Right now there is zero declination in Australia, but it is likely to move westward soon.

Key Takeaways:

  • The terms magnetic north and geographical north can be quite different
  • Despite being similar in name, the distance between these two points can vary up to 1000 kilometers
  • A magnetic field is formed due to liquid components of a magnetic field

“Magnetic compasses at the historic London area, known as the home of the Prime Meridian, were said to have pointed directly at the north geographic pole for the first time in 360 years.”

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